Research Outline

Top Health Issues Over Age 65


To determine the top 10 health conditions among those aged 65+ in the U.S., including the incidence rate of each condition. In addition, global statistics and projection on the same conditions are needed.

Early Findings


  • The National Council on Aging states that the top ten chronic diseases afflicting those over 65 are hypertension (58%), high cholesterol (47%), arthritis (31%), ischemic heart disease (29%), diabetes (27%), kidney disease (18%), heart failure (14%), depression (14%), Alzheimer's disease or other dementia (11%), and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (11%).
  • Most reports, such as those offered by the CDC and the Arthritis Foundation, focus on disease prevalence (the active number of cases), rather than the incidence (the rate of new cases), in the US.


  • An October 2017 CDC report states that the prevalence of hypertension in those over 60 was 66.8%; the data was not provided for over 65, specifically.
  • A Harvard Health article suggests that 70-79% of men over 55 have hypertension.
  • Some 1.13 billion people, globally, suffer from hypertension, though age-related data was not readily available.
  • The projected prevalence of hypertension for the 65+ age groups is anticipated to remain stead


  • According to the CDC, 49.6% of those over 65 have arthritis.
  • By 2020, the overall prevalence of arthritis among all age groups is expected to increase from 54 million people in 2015 to 78 million.