It is well known that Americans have the most expensive health care spending in the world as reported earlier. However, as to what diseases Americans spend the most money on is not very clear. A recent study announces that the top three diseases that drain the pocket are diabetes, heart conditions, and back pain.
The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation studied public health services and personal spending as they attempt to distinguish between the two with regards to medical spending on over 155 diseases.
They found that diabetes is the most expensive disease with $101 billion worth of spending on diagnosis and treatment alone. It is alarmingly growing 36 times more expensive than the spending worth on ischemic heart disease or heart attack.
According to Science Daily, heart disease was the leading cause of death for 18 years in the United States. However, due to the proliferation of fast food chains, conditions that promote fast food and high calorie food consumption, and sedentary lifestyle, diabetes gradually rose to the top of the health care spending list.
The study also highlighted the age groups affected by the top 3 most expensive diseases. Mostly people who are 65 and above suffer both diabetes and heart diseases, while back pain inflicts mostly those who are younger and working.
These top 3 diseases comprise $437 billion and 18% of the overall personal medical spending in 2013. All the 155 diseases studied accrue a whooping $2.1 trillion in spending. In addition to that, over the counter drugs and home health care are unaccounted for in the study, indicating that the estimated spending could come up to $2.4 trillion, Tech Times reports.
The implications for this finding speaks loudly on the lifestyle choices that people make. The top 3 most expensive diseases are serious health issues, but they are also easily preventable with proper education.
Other medical conditions that made it to the top 20 on health care spending are an array of musculoskeletal disorders, health visits to the dentists, and prenatal and postpartum care.