Increasing Prevalence of Diagnosed Diabetes in the United States and Puerto Rico

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During the years of 1995 – 2010, the age-adjusted prevalence of diagnosed diabetes mellitus in the United States and Puerto Rico increased from 4.5% to 8.2% says Owasso Family Medicine.

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention sponsors an ongoing telephone survey that collects information on health behaviors and medical conditions in all the states. Recently, they looked at the prevalence of diabetes in U.S. adults (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23151951).

During 1995–2010, the age-adjusted prevalence of diagnosed diabetes among U.S. adults increased from 4.5% to 8.2% in all geographic areas looked at. In 1995, this prevalence was ≥6% in only three states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico, but in 2010, it was ≥6% in all states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico.

The prevalence was the highest in the South where it was 9.8%, versus 7.3% in the Northeast and West and 7.5% in the Midwest. The relative increase over the years in question ranged from 8.5% in Puerto Rico to 226.7% in Oklahoma with an average median increase of 82.2% among all the geographic areas.

This increase is probably due to two factors – the fact that people with diabetes are living longer and the increased incidence of diabetes.

People with diabetes are living longer because of improvements in the quality of care, better medications, and fewer complications such as untreated high blood pressure or cholesterol.

The increased incidence might be the result of many factors, including increased obesity and sedentary behaviors, changes in diagnostic criteria, the aging of the population, and growth of minorities that have a higher risk of diabetes.

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention states that strategies are needed that address both the risk factors for developing diabetes in the population at large, as well as for those who are at particularly high risk.

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Paul Pisarik

Paul Pisarik
Owasso Family Medicine
918-212-6332
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