The incidence of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) has risen in the United States and globally in the past 2 decades, and the ongoing obesity epidemic among pediatric and adult patient populations has been cited as a major contributing factor to this increase.

The World Health Organization indicates that globally, an estimated 422 million individuals have diabetes, which is responsible for more than 1.5 million deaths annually. The American Diabetes Association and the CDC reveal that 37.3 million individuals have diabetes (representing 11.3% of the U.S. population), with a confirmed diagnosis in 28.7 million individuals, including 28.5 million adults. Moreover, 8.5 million adults remain undiagnosed. A total of 96 million individuals aged 18 years and older have prediabetes (38.0% of the adult U.S. population), and an estimated 26.4 million individuals aged 65 years and older (48.8%) have prediabetes. T2DM accounts for an estimated 90% to 95% of all cases, while type 1 diabetes accounts for the remaining 5% to 10%.

According to estimates in the CDC’s 2022 National Diabetes Statistics Report, more than 130 million U.S. adults have diabetes or prediabetes. Moreover, for the first time, the report included diabetes data by income level, which reveals that higher incidence of diabetes is correlated with poverty.

Other significant findings in the report include the following:

• An estimated 1.4 million new cases of diabetes were diagnosed among individuals aged 18 years and older in 2019

• The percentage of adults with diagnosed diabetes was highest among American Indian and Alaska Native individuals (14.5%), non-Hispanic black individuals (12.1%), and individuals of Hispanic origin (11.8%), followed by non-Hispanic Asian individuals (9.5%) and non-Hispanic white individuals (7.4%) in 2018-2019

• Adults with a family income below the federal poverty level had the greatest prevalence, with a rate of 13.7% in men) and 14.4% in women

• Individuals with less education were more likely to have diagnosed diabetes.

Diabetes is also the seventh leading cause of death in the U.S., but the actual number of deaths due to diabetes and its related complications may be underreported. The most recent CDC statistics reveal that diabetes accounted for more than 100,000 U.S. deaths in each of the past 2 years. In a recent article in the BMJ, the authors noted that diabetes was the most common underlying condition in the U.S. and COVID-19 was an exacerbating factor. Moreover, an estimated 40% of Americans who died of COVID-19 also had diabetes.

The content contained in this article is for informational purposes only. The content is not intended to be a substitute for professional advice. Reliance on any information provided in this article is solely at your own risk.

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