Prevalence and Incidence of Constipation


About prevalence and incidence statistics: The term 'prevalence' of Constipation usually refers to the estimated population of people who are managing Constipation at any given time. The term 'incidence' of Constipation refers to the annual diagnosis rate, or the number of new cases of Constipation 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 Constipation: 4.4 million people in the USA 1983-87 (Digestive diseases in the United States: Epidemiology and Impact NIH Publication No. 94-1447, NIDDK, 1994)
Prevalance Rate: approx 1 in 61 or 1.62% or 4.4 million people in USA [about data]
Prevalance of Constipation: According to the 1991 National Health Interview Survey, about 4 1/2 million people in the United States say they are constipated most or all of the time. Those reporting constipation most often are women, children, and adults age 65 and over. Pregnant women also complain of constipation, and it is a common problem following childbirth or surgery.

Constipation is the most common gastrointestinal complaint in the United States, resulting in about 2 million annual visits to the doctor. However, most people treat themselves without seeking medical help, as is evident from the $725 million Americans spend on laxatives each year. 1 ... Prevalence: 4.4 million people (1983-87)2

Prevelance statistics about Constipation: The following statistics relate to the prevalence of Constipation:

  • 20 per 1000 (NHIS95 for "frequent constipation")

1. excerpt from Constipation: NIDDK
2. excerpt from Digestive Diseases Statistics: NIDDK

Last revision: Nov 10, 2003

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