The number of people with diabetes in the United States just keeps growing, with the latest count topping 29 million, according to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
That number, from 2012, is up from 26 million in 2010 and includes 12.3% of the adult population, the CDC said in a report released Tuesday. Another 86 million adults, or one-third of the population, have blood sugar levels high enough to be diagnosed with pre-diabetes, CDC says.
"These new numbers are alarming and underscore the need for an increased focus on reducing the burden of diabetes in our country," the agency's Ann Albright said in a statement. "Diabetes is costly in both human and economic terms."
Diabetes is a disease in which blood glucose levels are above normal. Risk factors for the most common type include obesity, physical inactivity and aging. Complications can include vision loss, heart disease, stroke, kidney failure, amputation of feet or legs and premature death. Patients can manage the disease through diet, exercise and medication.
Among details from the report:
• One-quarter of adults with diabetes don't know they have it.
• More than 200,000 children and teens have diabetes.
• Diabetes is about twice as common among blacks, Hispanics, American Indian and Alaskan native adults as among whites. But pre-diabetes rates are similar among racial and ethnic groups.
• Diabetes and its complications cost $245 billion in 2012, up from $174 billion in 2010.