National Digestive Diseases
Information Clearinghouse (NDDIC)

A service of the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), National Institutes of Health (NIH)

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Digestive Diseases Statistics for the United States

On this page:

Glossary

Data for digestive diseases as a group and for specific diseases are provided in various categories. For some diseases, data do not exist in all categories.

Following are definitions used for the categories in this fact sheet:

Ambulatory care visits: The number of specific disease-related visits made annually to office-based health care providers, hospital outpatient clinics, and emergency departments.

Hospitalizations: The number of hospitalizations annually for a specific disease.

Incidence: The number of new cases annually of a specific disease.

Mortality: The number of deaths resulting annually from a specific disease listed as the underlying or primary cause.

Prescriptions: The number of prescriptions written annually for medications to treat a specific disease.

Prevalence: The number of people affected by a specific disease or diseases.

Procedures: The number of specific disease-related diagnostic, therapeutic, and surgical procedures performed annually in a hospital or an outpatient setting.

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All Digestive Diseases

Prevalence: 60 to 70 million people affected by all digestive diseases1
Ambulatory care visits: 48.3 million (2010)2–4
Hospitalizations: 21.7 million (2010)5
Mortality: 245,921 deaths (2009)6
Diagnostic and therapeutic inpatient procedures: 5.4 million—12 percent of all inpatient procedures (2007)7
Ambulatory surgical procedures: 20.4 million—20 percent of all “write-in” surgical procedures (2010)2
Costs: $141.8 billion (2004)8
$97.8 billion, direct medical costs (2004)8
$44 billion, indirect costs—for example, disability and mortality (2004)8

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Specific Diseases

Abdominal Wall Hernia
Ambulatory care visits: 3.6 million (2009)6
Surgical procedures: 526,000 (2006)9 (inguinal hernia only)
Hospitalizations: 380,000 (2010)5
Mortality: 1,322 deaths (2010)10
Prescriptions: 3.7 million (2004)8

Chronic Constipation
Prevalence: 63 million people (2000)11
Ambulatory care visits: 4.0 million (2009)6
Hospitalizations: 1.1 million (2010)5
Mortality: 132 deaths (2010)10
Prescriptions: 5.3 million (2004)8

Diverticular Disease
Prevalence: 2.2 million people (1998)12
Ambulatory care visits: 2.7 million (2009)6
Hospitalizations: 814,000 (2010)5
Mortality: 2,889 deaths (2010)10
Prescriptions: 2.8 million (2004)8

Gallstones
Prevalence: 20 million people (2004)13
Ambulatory care visits: 2.2 million (2006–2007)14 (includes all disorders of the gallbladder and biliary tract)
Surgical procedures: 503,000 (2006)9 (laparoscopic cholecystectomies only)
Hospitalizations: 675,000 (2010)5
Mortality: 994 deaths (2010)10
Prescriptions: 1.65 million (2004)8

Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease
Prevalence: Reflux symptoms at least weekly: 20 percent of the population (2004)15
Ambulatory care visits: 8.9 million (2009)6
Hospitalizations: 4.7 million (2010)5
Mortality: 1,653 deaths (2010)10
Prescriptions: 64.6 million (2004)8

Gastrointestinal Infections
Prevalence: Nonfoodborne gastroenteritis: 135 million people (1998)12; foodborne illness: 76 million people (1998)12
Ambulatory care visits: 2.3 million (2004)8
Hospitalizations: 487,000 (2010)5
Mortality: 11,022 deaths (2011)16
Prescriptions: 938,000 (2004)8

Hemorrhoids
Prevalence: 75 percent of people older than 45 (2006)17
Ambulatory care visits: 1.1 million (2009)6
Hospitalizations: 266,000 (2010)5
Mortality: 20 deaths (2010)10
Prescriptions: 2 million (2004)8

Inflammatory Bowel Disease
Ambulatory care visits: 1.9 million (2009)6

Crohn’s Disease
Prevalence: 359,000 people (1998)12
Ambulatory care visits: 1.1 million (2004)8
Hospitalizations: 187,000 (2010)5
Mortality: 611 deaths (2010)10
Prescriptions: 1.8 million (2004)8

Ulcerative Colitis
Prevalence: 619,000 people (1998)12
Ambulatory care visits: 716,000 (2004)8
Hospitalizations: 107,000 (2010)5
Mortality: 305 deaths (2010)10
Prescriptions: 2.1 million (2004)8

Irritable Bowel Syndrome
Prevalence: 15.3 million people (1998)12
Ambulatory care visits: 1.6 million (2009)6
Hospitalizations: 280,000 (2010)5
Mortality: 21 deaths (2010)10
Prescriptions: 5.9 million (2004)8

Liver Disease
Prevalence: 3.0 million people (2011)18
Ambulatory care visits: 635,000 (2009)6 (cirrhosis only)
Procedures: 6,342 (2011)19 (liver transplants)
Hospitalizations: 1.2 million (2010)5
Mortality: 42,923 deaths (2010)10
Prescriptions: 731,000 (2004)8

Pancreatitis
Prevalence: 1.1 million people (1998)12
Incidence: Acute: 17 cases per 100,000 people (2003)20; chronic: 8.2 cases per 100,000 people (1981)21
Ambulatory care visits: 881,000 (2004)8
Hospitalizations: 553,000 (2010)5
Mortality: 3,413 deaths (2010)10
Prescriptions: 766,000 (2004)8

Peptic Ulcer Disease
Prevalence: 15.5 million people (2011)18
Ambulatory care visits: 669,000 (2006–2007)14
Hospitalizations: 358,000 (2010)5
Mortality: 2,981 deaths (2011)16
Prescriptions: 5 million (2004)8

Viral Hepatitis
Hepatitis A
Prevalence of chronic infection: None (2007)22
Incidence: 1,670 new acute clinical cases (2010)22
Ambulatory care visits: Infrequent (2004)8
Hospitalizations: 10,000 (2004)8
Mortality: 29 deaths (2010)10

Hepatitis B
Prevalence of chronic infection: 800,000 to 1.4 million people (2007)22
Incidence: 3,350 new acute clinical cases (2010)22
Ambulatory care visits: 729,000 (2004)8
Hospitalizations: 61,000 (2010)5
Mortality: 588 deaths (2010)10

Hepatitis C
Prevalence of chronic infection: 2.7 to 3.9 million people (2007)22
Incidence: 850 new acute clinical cases (2010)22
Ambulatory care visits: 1.2 million (2009)6
Hospitalizations: 419,000 (2010)5
Mortality: 6,844 deaths (2010)10

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Sources

  1. National Institutes of Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Opportunities and Challenges in Digestive Diseases Research: Recommendations of the National Commission on Digestive Diseases. Bethesda, MD: National Institutes of Health; 2009. NIH Publication 08–6514.

  2. National ambulatory medical care survey: 2010 summary tables. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. www.cdc.gov/nchs/ahcd/web_tables.htm#2010. Updated March 29, 2012. Accessed May 2, 2013.

  3. National ambulatory medical care survey: 2010 emergency department summary tables. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. www.cdc.gov/nchs/ahcd/web_tables.htm#2010. Updated March 29, 2012. Accessed May 2, 2013.

  4. National ambulatory medical care survey: 2010 outpatient department summary tables. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. www.cdc.gov/nchs/ahcd/web_tables.htm#2010. Updated March 29, 2012. Accessed May 2, 2013.

  5. CDC/NCHS national hospital discharge survey: United States, 2010. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/nhds/10Detaileddiagnosesprocedures/2010det10_numberalldiagnoses.pdf. (PDF, 1,506 KB)* Accessed May 2, 2013.

  6. Peery AF, Dellon ES, Lund J, et al. Burden of gastrointestinal disease in the United States: 2012 update. Gastroenterology. 2012;143:1179–1187.

  7. Hall MJ, DeFrances CJ, Williams SN, Golosinskiy A, Schwartzman A. National hospital discharge survey: 2007 summary. National Health Statistics Reports. 2010;29:1–20.

  8. Everhart JE, ed. The Burden of Digestive Diseases in the United States. Bethesda, MD: National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services; 2008. NIH Publication 09–6433.

  9. Cullen KA, Hall MJ, Golosinskiy A. Ambulatory surgery in the United States, 2006. National Health Statistics Reports. 2009;11:1–25.

  10. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Health Statistics. Underlying cause of death, detailed mortality, 2010, sorted by diseases of the digestive system (K00–K92). CDC WONDER online database. http://wonder.cdc.gov/. Updated April 19, 2013. Accessed May 2, 2013.

  11. Higgins PD, Johanson JF. Epidemiology of constipation in North America: a systematic review. American Journal of Gastroenterology. 2004;99:750–759.

  12. Sandler RS, Everhart JE, Donowitz M, et al. The burden of selected digestive diseases in the United States. Gastroenterology. 2002;122:1500–1511.

  13. Shaffer EA. Epidemiology of gallbladder stone disease. Best Practice & Research Clinical Gastroenterology. 2006;20(6):981–996.

  14. Schappert SM, Rechtsteiner EA. Ambulatory medical care utilization estimates for 2007. Vital and Health Statistics, Series 13: Data on Health Resources Utilization. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/series/sr_13/sr13_169.pdf. (PDF, 757 KB)* Published April 2011. Accessed May 2, 2013.

  15. El-Serag HB, Petersen NJ, Carter J, et al. Gastroesophageal reflux among different racial groups in the United States. Gastroenterology. 2004;126:1692–1699.

  16. Hoyert DL, Xu J. Deaths: preliminary data for 2011. National Vital Statistics Reports. 2012;61(6)1–96.

  17. Baker H. Hemorrhoids. In: Longe JL, ed. Gale Encyclopedia of Medicine. 3rd ed. Detroit: Gale; 2006: 1766–1769.

  18. Schiller JS, Lucas JW, Peregoy JA. Summary health statistics for U.S. adults: national health interview survey, 2011. Vital and Health Statistics, Series 10: Data from the National Health Interview Survey. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/series/sr_10/sr10_256.pdf. (PDF, 3,192 KB)* Published December 2012. Accessed May 2, 2013.

  19. Transplants in the U.S. by recipient gender. Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network website. http://optn.transplant.hrsa.gov/latestData/step2.asp. Updated August 24, 2012. Accessed August 30, 2012.

  20. Brown A, Young B, Morton J, Behrns K, Shaheen N. Are health related outcomes in acute pancreatitis improving? An analysis of national trends in the U.S. from 1997 to 2003. JOP: Journal of the Pancreas. 2008;9(4):408–414.

  21. Gupta V, Toskes P. Diagnosis and management of chronic pancreatitis. Postgraduate Medicine Journal. 2005;81:491–497.

  22. Viral hepatitis surveillance—United States, 2010. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. www.cdc.gov/hepatitis/Statistics/2010Surveillance/index.htm. Updated August 20, 2012. Accessed May 2, 2013.
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Hope through Research

The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases’ (NIDDK’s) Division of Digestive Diseases and Nutrition supports basic and clinical research into digestive diseases.

Clinical trials are research studies involving people. Clinical trials look at safe and effective new ways to prevent, detect, or treat disease. Researchers also use clinical trials to look at other aspects of care, such as improving the quality of life for people with chronic illnesses. To learn more about clinical trials, why they matter, and how to participate, visit the NIH Clinical Research Trials and You website at www.nih.gov/health/clinicaltrials. For information about current studies, visit www.ClinicalTrials.gov.

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Acknowledgments

Publications produced by the Clearinghouse are carefully reviewed by NIDDK scientists.


You may also find additional information about this topic by visiting MedlinePlus at www.medlineplus.gov.

This publication may contain information about medications and, when taken as prescribed, the conditions they treat. When prepared, this publication included the most current information available. For updates or for questions about any medications, contact the U.S. Food and Drug Administration toll-free at 1–888–INFO–FDA (1–888–463–6332) or visit www.fda.gov. Consult your health care provider for more information.


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National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse

2 Information Way
Bethesda, MD 20892–3570
Phone: 1–800–891–5389
TTY: 1–866–569–1162
Fax: 703–738–4929
Email: nddic@info.niddk.nih.gov
Internet: www.digestive.niddk.nih.gov

The National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse (NDDIC) is a service of the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK). The NIDDK is part of the National Institutes of Health of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Established in 1980, the Clearinghouse provides information about digestive diseases to people with digestive disorders and to their families, health care professionals, and the public. The NDDIC answers inquiries, develops and distributes publications, and works closely with professional and patient organizations and Government agencies to coordinate resources about digestive diseases.

This publication is not copyrighted. The Clearinghouse encourages users of this publication to duplicate and distribute as many copies as desired.


NIH Publication No. 13–3873
September 2013

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Page last updated June 4, 2014


The National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse is a service of the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, National Institutes of Health.

National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse
2 Information Way
Bethesda, MD 20892–3570
Phone: 1–800–891–5389
TTY: 1–866–569–1162
Fax: 703–738–4929
Email: nddic@info.niddk.nih.gov
Internet: www.digestive.niddk.nih.gov

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