Tag Archive for 'diabetes'

Diabetes – the unknown epidemic

The New York Times has an eyeraising article about diabetes and how it’s reaching epidemic proportions in the United States and New York City in particular.

Here’re some stats about diabetes:

  1. an estimated 800,000 adult New Yorkers, or more than one in every eight, have diabetes.
  2. in the last decade the number of diabetics in New York has risen 140%
  3. the New York public health system has 3 people and $950K budget to fight diabetes. Tuberculosis, which infects 1,000 people annually, has 400 people and $27M budget.
  4. total estimates annual cost of diabetes nationwide is $132B. All cancers together cost about $171B every year
  5. every day in New York City 4,100 people are diagnosed with diabetes, 230 diabetics have amputations, 120 diabetics enter end-stage kidney disease programs and 55 diabetics go blind. Every day.
  6. one out of every ten dollars spent on health care is spent on diabetes related costs
  7. in 2002 224,092 people died of diabetes related complications. The number is likely to be under-reported.

Diabetes is a serious disease, for which there is no cure. You can treat the symptoms to keep the disease under control, but patients have an increased risk of high blood pressure, heart attacks, birth defects, kidney failures and blindness among other things.

Doctors estimate the life expectancy of a diabetic is 5 to 15 years lower than average. They also expect that due to diabetes the average life expectancy of Americans is likely to drop for the first time in more than 100 years.