An Empirical Study of Chronic Diseases in the United States: A Visual Analytics Approach

Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2018 Mar 1;15(3):431. doi: 10.3390/ijerph15030431.


In this research we explore the current state of chronic diseases in the United States, using data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and applying visualization and descriptive analytics techniques. Five main categories of variables are studied, namely chronic disease conditions, behavioral health, mental health, demographics, and overarching conditions. These are analyzed in the context of regions and states within the U.S. to discover possible correlations between variables in several categories. There are widespread variations in the prevalence of diverse chronic diseases, the number of hospitalizations for specific diseases, and the diagnosis and mortality rates for different states. Identifying such correlations is fundamental to developing insights that will help in the creation of targeted management, mitigation, and preventive policies, ultimately minimizing the risks and costs of chronic diseases. As the population ages and individuals suffer from multiple conditions, or comorbidity, it is imperative that the various stakeholders, including the government, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), policy makers, health providers, and society as a whole, address these adverse effects in a timely and efficient manner.

Keywords: behavioral health; chronic disease; comorbidity; overarching condition; population health; preventive health.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, U.S.
  • Chronic Disease / epidemiology*
  • Data Visualization
  • Empirical Research
  • Female
  • Health Behavior*
  • Hospitalization
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mental Health*
  • Prevalence
  • United States / epidemiology