BackgroundThere is a dearth of updated epidemiological data on the prevalence and annual incidence of coronary artery disease (CAD) and lower extremity artery disease (LEAD) in Western countries.AimsTo describe the incidence and prevalence of CAD and LEAD, associated medication patterns and long-term outcomes in France.MethodsThis was a retrospective cohort study using French claims data from a representative sample of the French general population. Any hospitalization or long-term disease status for CAD or LEAD between January 2010 and December 2016 was collected to identify incident cases.ResultsOf the 763,338 patients screened in the study period, 8559 incident cases of CAD and 4399 of LEAD were identified, with an overall mean follow-up of 2.9 ± 2.0 years. The incidence of CAD, LEAD and CAD or LEAD remained stable over the years, and in 2016 were at 33.5 per 10,000 person-years, 15.1 per 10,000 person-years and 42.5 per 10,000 person-years, respectively. The prevalence of CAD increased from 3.1% in 2010 to 4.2% in 2016, and LEAD from 1.6% to 2.4%. Most patients received guideline-recommended medication with antithrombotic drugs and lipid-lowering drugs following the index event. However, most of the medications initiated were subsequently discontinued during follow-up. Incident CAD or LEAD was associated with considerable morbidity–particularly an incidence of all-cause hospitalization of 7976.9 per 10,000 person-years–and all-cause mortality, with an incidence of 542.8 per 10,000 person-years.ConclusionIn recent years, the prevalence of CAD or LEAD has increased progressively, resulting in considerable morbidity and mortality.