60 percent American adults 'have at least one chronic condition'

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Washington, June 3 : Sixty percent of American adults have at least one chronic medical condition, according to figures from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ).

A chronic condition can be defined as a condition that lasts at least one year and result in limitations or the need for ongoing medical care.

According to AHRQ, in 2005, about 22 million Americans got medical care for osteoarthritis and related conditions, 49 million for asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, 17 million for diabetes, 45 million for high blood pressure, and 19 million for heart disease.

After analysing chronic conditions as a whole in 2005, AHRQ found that almost 4 in 10 Americans between 18 and 34 years of age had at least one chronic condition and the same applied for 9 of every 10 aged 65 and older.

They also indicated that nearly 77 percent of Americans aged 65 and older had two or more chronic conditions. Only 14 percent of those 18 to 34 had two or more conditions.

Lastly, they found that 9 of every 10 dollars spent for medical care (excluding expenses for dental care and medical equipment and supplies) on adults in the United States was spent to treat people having chronic conditions.

The detailed findings have been published in the latest News and Numbers from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ).

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