Chronic Pain Facts


Chronic pain is the most common major medical problem in the United States. One survey showed that up to 100 million Americans suffer from some form of chronic pain, and all that treatment costs a lot of money. 

Commonly Reported Chronic Pain Symptoms

Back pain is the most common place for people to experience chronic pain. Upwards of 26 million Americans between the ages of 20 and 64 suffer from back pain, and back pain was shown to negatively affect quality of life for many of those people. Generally speaking, back pain sufferers were in worse health, physically and mentally, than those who reportedly did not suffer from back pain. People with back pain were four times as likely to be in serious psychological distress.

Headaches and migraines came in second in the NIH survey about chronic pain, followed by neck pain, and then facial or jaw pain coming in next.

Incidence of Pain Compare to Other Conditions

Think of all the health epidemics we’ve heard about in the media. More and more people are living with diabetes, an estimated 25.8 million, in fact. 16.3 million Americans are living with coronary heart disease, and 7 million people have suffered from a stroke. 11.9 million people have battled cancer. Every one of those statistics seem so very high, but those numbers pale in comparison to the 100 million people living with chronic pain, especially when you take into account the number of ways that chronic pain could be potentially fatal (think severe depression that leads to suicidal thoughts, or the dangers of medications) and the extreme impacts to quality of life.

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