Projected Prevalence of Arthritis-Related Limitations to Rise

HealthDay News – New research projects that based on present-day age- and sex-specific arthritis prevalence, 1 in 4 adults in the U.S. will have doctor-diagnosed arthritis by 2040, with 1 in 9 adults having limitations secondary to arthritis.

Jennifer M. Hootman, PhD, from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, and colleagues used a newer baseline for estimates to examine the projected prevalence of arthritis and arthritis-attributable activity limitations among U.S. adults. 

Baseline prevalence data were obtained from the National Health Interview Survey for 2010 to 2012; arthritis prevalence and arthritis-attributable activity limitation were stratified according to age and sex. By multiplying these baseline estimates by the age- and sex-stratified population estimates projected for 2015 to 2040, the projected prevalence was calculated.

The researchers found that 52.5 million adults in the United States had doctor-diagnosed arthritis in 2010 to 2012 (22.7% of all adults) and that 22.7 million had arthritis-attributable activity limitation (9.8%. The number of U.S. adults with doctor-diagnosed arthritis is projected to increase to 78.4 million by 2040 (25.9% of adults), and the number of those with arthritis-attributable activity limitation is projected to reach 34.6 million (11.4% of adults).

“Updated projections suggest that arthritis and arthritis-attributable activity limitation will remain large and growing problems for clinical and public health systems, which must plan and create policies and resources to address these future needs,” the authors write.

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Hootman JM, Helmick CG, Barbour KE, Theis KA, Boring MA. Updated Projected Prevalence of Self-Reported Doctor-Diagnosed Arthritis and Arthritis-Attributable Activity Limitation Among US Adults, 2015-2040. Arthritis Rheumatol. 2016;68(7):1582-7.