Forecasting the Future Economic Burden of Current Adolescent Overweight: An Estimate of the Coronary Heart Disease Policy Model

School of Pharmacy, Department of Medicine, University of California, 3333 California St, Suite 420, San Francisco, CA 94118, USA.
American Journal of Public Health (Impact Factor: 4.55). 12/2009; 99(12):2230-7. DOI: 10.2105/AJPH.2008.152595
Source: PubMed


We predicted the future economic burden attributable to high rates of current adolescent overweight.
We constructed models to simulate the costs of excess obesity and associated diabetes and coronary heart disease (CHD) among adults aged 35-64 years in the US population in 2020 to 2050.
Current adolescent overweight is projected to result in 161 million life-years complicated by obesity, diabetes, or CHD and 1.5 million life-years lost. The cumulative excess attributable total costs are estimated at $254 billion: $208 billion because of lost productivity from earlier death or morbidity and $46 billion from direct medical costs. Currently available therapies for hypertension, hyperlipidemia, and diabetes, used according to guidelines, if applied in the future, would result in modest reductions in excess mortality (decreased to 1.1 million life-years lost) but increase total excess costs by another $7 billion (increased to $261 billion total).
Current adolescent overweight will likely lead to large future economic and health burdens, especially lost productivity from premature death and disability. Application of currently available medical treatments will not greatly reduce these future burdens of increased adult obesity.

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    • "Many researchers have noted that obesity has the same association with chronic health conditions as does 20 years of aging, and the cost of obesity exceeds the costs of smoking and drinking for national health care use [2-4]. Adolescent obesity may result in up to 1.5 million life-years lost, with total costs of $294 billion when lost productivity is combined with medical costs [5,6]. "
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