By the Numbers


Diabetes on the rise

The facts are in: the incidence of diabetes is growing at near-epidemic rates.

In the U.S.:

  • New evidence shows that one in three Americans born starting in 2000 will develop diabetes sometime during their lifetime.
  • The number of adults diagnosed with diabetes, including women with gestational diabetes (diabetes that develops during pregnancy) has increased 61% since 1991 and is projected to more than double by 2050.


  • An estimated 194 million people worldwide have diabetes, up from an estimated 30 million in 1985. This number is expected to increase to at least 333 million by 2025.
  • The World Health Organization estimates that by 2025, there will be more people with diabetes in the world than the entire population of the United States.

How many Americans have diabetes?

  • In 2010, 25.8 million children and adults in the U.S. – 8.3% of the population -- had diabetes.
  • Of this total, 18.8 million people have been diagnosed with the disease; another 7 million people are unaware they have it.
  • An additional 79 million people had pre-diabetes.
  • Type 2 is the most prevalent form of diabetes in America. Of the 18.8 million people with diagnosed diabetes, approximately 1.1 million -- or 6% -- have type 1. The remainder are type 2 diabetics.
  • However, of the $116 billion that is spent annually to manage and treat diabetes, more than half the costs are incurred by people with type 1 diabetes.

Age & gender

  • Of the 18.8 million people diagnosed with diabetes, 215,000 are children and adolescents – about 1 in every 400 people under the age of 20. This number includes both type 1 and type 2 diabetes.
  • 11.3% of adults age 20 and older (25.6 million Americans) are diabetic.
  • In 2010 alone, there were 1.9 million new cases of diabetes diagnosed in people age 20 and older.
  • 26.9% of Americans age 65 and older are diabetic (10.9 million people)
  • 13 million, or 11.8% of all men 20 years and older have diabetes.
  • 12.6 million, or 10.8% of all women 20 years and older have diabetes.

Death rates & complications

  • Diabetes is the 7th leading cause of death in the United States, responsible for more than 231,000 deaths each year. Overall, the risk of death among people with diabetes is about two times that of people without diabetes.
  • Risk of death from heart disease among people with diabetes is 2-4 times higher than those without the disease.
  • Risk of stroke is also 2-4 times higher.
  • Diabetes is the leading cause of new cases of blindness among adults age 20-74.
  • 28.5% of people with diabetes age 40 and older have diabetic retinopathy, a condition that can lead to vision loss.
  • Diabetes is the leading cause of kidney failure in the U.S.
  • In 2008, 202,290 people with end-stage kidney failure due to diabetes were living with chronic dialysis or with a kidney transplant.
  • More than 60% of non-traumatic lower limb amputations occur in people with diabetes. In 2006, about 65,700 lower limb amputations were performed on people with diabetes.


  • The total cost of diagnosed diabetes in the U.S. is estimated to be $174 billion.
  • Of this total, $116 billion is for direct medical costs. An estimated $58 billion is for indirect costs such as work loss, disability, etc.
  • Factoring in undiagnosed diabetes, pre-diabetes and gestational diabetes, the total cost is estimated to be $218 billion.
  • Average medical expenditures for people with diabetes are 2.3 times higher than those without diabetes.

For additional data, see the following organizations: