Prevalence and Incidence of Autoimmune diseases


About prevalence and incidence statistics: The term 'prevalence' of Autoimmune diseases usually refers to the estimated population of people who are managing Autoimmune diseases at any given time. The term 'incidence' of Autoimmune diseases refers to the annual diagnosis rate, or the number of new cases of Autoimmune diseases diagnosed each year. Hence, these two statistics types can differ: a short-lived disease like flu can have high annual incidence but low prevalence, but a life-long disease like diabetes has a low annual incidence but high prevalence. For more information see about prevalence and incidence statistics.

Prevalance of Autoimmune diseases: 8,511,845 people in the USA 1996 1
Prevalance Rate: approx 1 in 31 or 3.13% or 8.5 million people in USA [about data]
Prevalance of Autoimmune diseases: As a group, however, autoimmune diseases afflict millions of Americans.2

Prevelance of Autoimmune diseases discussion: Individually, autoimmune diseases are not very common, with the exception of thyroid disease, diabetes, and systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). However, taken as a whole, they represent the fourth largest cause of disability among women in the United States. 3

Prevelance statistics about Autoimmune diseases: The following statistics relate to the prevalence of Autoimmune diseases:

  • 75% of cases of autoimmune diseases occur in women in the US (The National Women’s Health Centre, 2004)
  • Fourth largest cause of disability among women in the US is autoimmune disease (The National Women’s Health Centre, 2004)

1. Rose and Mackay, 1998, The Autoimmune Diseases, Third Edition
2. excerpt from Understanding Autoimmune Disease: NIAID
3. excerpt from Fact Sheet Autoimmune Disease in Women: NWHIC

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