Musculoskeletal Disease Prevalence


Fourth Edition advance copy

Disclaimer: This chapter will be included in the forthcoming The Burden of Musculoskeletal Diseases in the United States, Fourth Edition. The United States Bone and Joint Initiative is making it available here prior to its final print publication. This chapter has not been finalized for publication; therefore, it may contain errors of fact, interpretation, or information. The United States Bone and Joint Initiative editors and staff are not responsible for the use of any potentially misleading or inaccurate information or data. Click here for the suggested citation.

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Lead Author(s): 

Edward H. Yelin, PhD
Miriam Cisternas, MA

Supporting Author(s): 

Sylvia I. Watkins-Castillo, PhD

Over the period of 2009 to 2011, an estimated 102.5 million persons annually reported a musculoskeletal disease in the Medical Expenditures Panel Survey (MEPS). The annual average proportion of the United States population with a musculoskeletal disease has increased by more than five percentage points between 1996 to 1998 and 2009 to 2011, from 28.0% to 33.2%. Musculoskeletal disease now includes about one-third of the population. The growth in the number of cases of musculoskeletal disease is more a function of the number of persons in the ages of increased incidence than in overall increase in all age groups. (Reference Table 10.1 PDF CSV)
Trend in Proportion of Population with Musculoskeletal Disease, United States 1996 to 2011
Change in Numbe of Cases of Musculoskeletal Diseases, by Age Group, 1996-2011


  • 2014

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