Oklahoma, www.OK.gov <{$map[0].NAME}>

Contact  |  A-Z Health Index  |  Events & Meetings

get adobe reader

FOR RELEASE: October 28, 2002
CONTACT: Pamela Williams

National CDC Survey Finds One in Three Adults Have Arthritis
Nearly One Million Oklahomans Report Arthritis or other Chronic Joint Symptoms

The first state-by-state survey of arthritis and chronic joint symptoms shows that 1 in 3 U.S. adults are affected, compared to previous estimates of 1 in 6, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) 2001 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System report. The CDC national data put the number of adults, 18 years of age and older, with arthritis and chronic joint symptoms at 70 million (33.0 percent), a substantial increase over the previous estimate that 43 million had arthritis.

In Oklahoma, 936,000 Oklahomans report having arthritis or other joint symptoms, a significant increase from 679,000 persons who reported having these problems in 1999 when Oklahoma first began its arthritis surveillance, according to health officials at the Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH).

The CDC national survey captures both diagnosed and undiagnosed persons with chronic joint symptoms - pain, aching, stiffness, or swelling in or around their joints. The survey found that the percentages of people reporting arthritis and chronic joint symptoms varied widely among the states. Hawaii had the lowest rate (17.8 percent) and West Virginia had the highest (42.6 percent). Oklahoma was rated at 36.3 percent.

“Arthritis is the number one cause of disability and in Oklahoma we have not been idle in our approach to arthritis,” said State Health Commissioner Dr. Leslie Beitsch. “Since establishing the Arthritis Prevention and Education Program at the Oklahoma State Department of Health, a statewide coalition called the Oklahoma Arthritis Network was formed. It involves not only the state and local county health departments and the Arthritis Foundation but also businesses, private and public agencies, individuals and countless others who are working together to increase public awareness about arthritis and its related conditions. These groups hope to maximize the quality of life for Oklahomans by developing resources, promoting access to appropriate health care management, and advocating for the provision of arthritis education.”

Beitsch said the Arthritis Foundation and the OSDH have collaborated to train more than 70 people to lead the Arthritis Foundation’s Arthritis Self-Help Course, an evidence-based program.

For more information on arthritis and to obtain a copy of the Oklahoma Arthritis Action Plan, visit the Oklahoma State Department of Health Web site at www.health.state.ok.us/program/apep or call the Arthritis Prevention and Education Program at (405) 271-6127.


Creating a State of Health Logo