Arthritis and Obesity in the US Versus Canada

Last month, results from a study that compared the prevalence of arthritis and arthritis-attributable activity limitations in the US and Canada were released. Upon review, study authors found that there was a "higher prevalence of arthritis and AAL to a greater level of obesity and physical inactivity in Americans, particularly women."

Last month, results from a study that compared the prevalence of arthritis and arthritis-attributable activity limitations (AAL) in the US and Canada. Upon review, study authors found that there was a "higher prevalence of arthritis and AAL to a greater level of obesity and physical inactivity in Americans, particularly women."

The study authors evaluated the data of 3,505 Canadians and 5,183 Americans who were part of the Joint Canada/United States Survey of Health in 2002-2003, and learned the following:

  • Prevalence of arthritis - US= 18.7%; Canada= 16.8%
  • AAL rate - US= 9.6%; Canada= 7.7%
  • Prevalence of arthritis in women - US= 23.3%; Canada= 19.6%
  • AAL rate in women - US= 13.0%; Canada= 9.2%
  • Occurance of arthritis and AAL in men - virtually the same in both countries; 14% occurance and 6% AAL rate

Based on these results, the authors were able to conclude that "the higher prevalence of arthritis and AAL in the U.S. may be a consequence of greater obesity and physical inactivity in that country, particularly in women."

Click here to access the abstract from this study published in the March issue of Arthritis Care & Research.