- Chronic (medical)
medicine, a chronic disease is a diseasethat is long-lasting or recurrent. The term "chronic" describes the course of the disease, or its rate of onset and development. A chronic course is distinguished from a recurrent course; recurrent diseases relapserepeatedly, with periods of remission in between. As an adjective, "chronic" can refer to a persistent and lasting medical condition. "Chronicity" is usually applied to a condition that lasts more than three months.
The definition of a disease or causative condition may depend on the disease being chronic, and the term chronic will often, but not always appear in the description:
Chronic fatigue syndrome
* Chronic osteoarticular diseases:
rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis
* Chronic respiratory diseases:
chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, asthma
Chronic renal failure
* Autoimmune diseases, like
Cardiovascular diseases: heart failure, ischemic cardiopathy, cerebrovascular disease
Neoplasic diseasesnot amenable to be cured
Many chronic diseases require
chronic care managementfor effective long-term treatment.
Nearly one in two Americans (133 million) has a chronic medical condition of one kind or another. [Chronic Care in America: A 21st Century Challenge, a study of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation & Partnership for Solutions: Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD for the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (September 2004 Update). "Chronic Conditions: Making the Case for Ongoing Care"] However, most of these people are not actually disabled, as their medical conditions do not impair normal activities. According to this report, the most common chronic conditions are high blood pressure,
arthritis, respiratory diseases like emphysema, and high cholesterol. That number is projected to increase by more than one percent per year by 2030, resulting in an estimated chronically ill population of 171 million. [ibid]
60% are between the ages of 18 and 64. [ibid] 90% of seniors have at least one chronic disease and 77% have two or more chronic diseases. [The Growing Burden of Chronic Disease in American, Public Health Reports / May–June 2004 / Volume 119, Gerard Anderson, PhD]
* Homeopathic theory of chronic diseases
Disease management (health)
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