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Common Diseases in Swedes

As of 2019, the population of Sweden is at 10.23 million. The country is a Scandinavian nation that has thousands of inland lakes and coastal islands. Generally speaking, they have a high performing health system, especially in their hospitals. 

According to the OECD Health Policy, the life expectancy of Swedes is between 80 and 83 years old. Their acute health care performance is high, but secondary prevention is low. This had resulted in some common preventable diseases, and these include the following. 


Cardiovascular Diseases (CVD)

CVD is the primary cause of mortality and morbidity in Sweden. Ischemic heart disease among Swedes has an annual mortality rate of 241.1 deaths in every 100,000 individuals. 

As such, Sweden has developed an ongoing intervention and initiative implemented by the Swedish National Institute of Public Health. The goal is to target communities and encourage them to change their lifestyle. 

Another approach is through individual-based strategies that include health checks, counseling, and treatment for those high-risk individuals. According to a study, these interventions were found to have been effective, especially in encouraging Swedes to be physically active and develop healthy eating habits. 



The recent health care development and studies have increased the number of cancer survivors in Sweden compared to other European countries. Specifically, in Northern Europe, the cancer survival rate is at 59.6%; however, the cancer rate survival rate is 64.7% in Sweden. 

The most common cancer sites among men are prostate cancer, skin cancer excluding melanoma, colon, lungs, and cancer in the urinary organs. Among women, the most frequent cancers are breast, skin, lung, colon, and melanoma. 

As such, the Swedish Cancer Institute encourages Swedes to undergo early detection and screening. For anal and colorectal cancer, patients should undergo colonoscopy. Mammograms and other routine breast examinations also help in early detection and risk prevention. 

Generally speaking, one should maintain a healthy lifestyle to ensure cancer-free life. Some of the things you can do are using sunscreen, avoiding tanning beds, eating healthier, exercising regularly, avoiding smoking and consuming tobacco products, and limiting alcohol consumption. 


Chronic Respiratory Diseases

One of the most common respiratory diseases among Swedes is a chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. It is a common disease, but it’s often undiagnosed, even though almost 500,000 Swedes have it. 

Old age and tobacco smoking are two of the most common reasons why Swedes acquire COPD. Studies have shown that those who die from COPD have continued to smoke even after they were diagnosed. However, this was the case 20 years ago.

Because of health intervention and smoking prevention activities, there has been a 50 percent decline among people who suffer from COPD. There is still no cure for the disease. Nonetheless, new treatments and medical approaches to the disease had helped in fewer issues. 


Dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease

According to statistics, 1.82% of the population of Sweden had dementia. This is most common among the aging population and is uncommon among those who are 65 years old or younger. 

The government’s approach and strategy are to ensure that people with dementia are secured. To do this, a collaboration with health and social care institutions is carried out. Information dissemination to ensure early detection, evaluation, and monitoring is another approach. 

More importantly, private and public institutions are also working with the families and friends of those who have the disease. A collective effort is critical to ensure the safety of those who are suffering from the disease. 


These are just some of the common diseases that Swedes suffer from. To combat these diseases, we need to acknowledge and understand this better. Therefore, don’t hesitate to talk to your local health care and ask the necessary questions for a better and healthier life for you and your families. 


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References: https://www.who.int/nmh/countries/swe_en.pdf