About Diabetes

  • The Center for Disease Control (CDC) estimates that there are 29.1 million people with diabetes in the United States representing about 9% of the population. Of these, about 21 million are diagnosed, while 8 million people do not know they have the condition. More than 90% of diabetics have type 2 diabetes, the form that usually appears in adults.
  • The International Diabetes Federation (IDF) estimates that diabetes kills one person every six seconds and afflicts 382 million people worldwide. The number of people affected by the disease is expected to climb 55 percent to 592 million by 2035.
  • Family history and genes play a role in type 2 diabetes. Low activity levels and excess body weight increase one’s chances of getting the disease.
  • In 2009−2012, based on fasting glucose or A1C levels, 37% of U.S. adults aged 20 years or older had prediabetes (51% of those aged 65 years or older). Applying this percentage to the entire U.S. population in 2012 yields an estimated 86 million Americans aged 20 years or older with prediabetes.
  • Diabetes is the leading cause of kidney failure, non-traumatic lower-limb amputations, and new cases of blindness among U.S. adults. It is a major cause of heart disease and stroke and is the 7th leading cause of death.
  • Direct and indirect costs associated with diabetes totaled an estimated $322 billion in 2012, and increase of 48% since the s007 projections. The IDF estimates that diabetes will account for $627 billion in annual health spending by 2035.
  • Data also shows the cost of prediabetes care increased 74% and expenses for undiagnosed diabetes grew 82% in 2012.
  • In 2011, over 48 million prescriptions were written for metformin, the first line therapy for type 2 diabetes.  However, over 20% of patients prescribed the drug (8.4 million) cannot tolerate it due to gastrointestinal side effects.


CDC National Diabetes Statistics Report – 2014

The Economic Burden of Elevated Blood Glucose Levels in 2012: Diagnosed and Undiagnosed Diabetes, Gestational Diabetes Mellitus, and Prediabetes

National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse