Study: Older Americans far less healthy than older Europeans

Share this content:

Older Americans' health pales in comparison to that of their European counterparts, a new study finds.

U.S. adults aged 50 and older are twice as likely as older European adults to have a number of chronic diseases. Many of these diseases are related to obesity and smoking, according a study published Tuesday on the Web site of the journal Health Affairs. Researchers examined information from 2004 on the treatment of chronic diseases among adults aged 50 and older in the U.S. and 10 European nations.

Among the findings: Older U.S. adults were twice as likely as older European adults to have heart disease; older U.S. adults were more than twice as likely as older European adults to have arthritis; and 16% of older U.S. adults had diabetes, compared with 11% of older European adults.

See the study at http://content.healthaffairs.org/cgi/content/abstract/hlthaff.26.6.w678.