Autoimmune Diseases

Type 1 Diabetes

  • As of 2010, 25.8 million people—8.3 percent of the population—have diabetes (types 1 or 2). In adults, type 1 diabetes accounts for 5 to 10 percent of all diagnosed cases of diabetes.
  • Based on 2002 to 2005 data, 15,600 people under the age of 20 are newly diagnosed with type 1 diabetes each year.
  • Approximately 1 in every 400 to 500 children and adolescents has type 1 diabetes.
  • For people born between 1975 and 1980, about 3.5 percent die within 20 years of type 1 diabetes diagnosis, and 7 percent die within 25 years of diagnosis

Multiple Sclerosis (MS)

  • Although no one knows exactly how many people have MS, it is thought that approximately 250,000 to 350,000 people in the United States have been diagnosed with the disease.
  • MS accounts for 118,000 hospitalizations per year.

Inflammatory Bowel Diseases (IBDs)

  • IBD refers to two chronic inflammatory disorders of the intestine and colon, Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis.
  • Ulcerative colitis accounts for 51,000 hospitalizations per year, while Crohn’s disease accounts for 69,000 hospitalizations per year.

Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA)

  • RA afflicts an estimated 1.5 million people in the United States, with significantly more women affected than men.
  • The percentage of people with this disorder varies with age, from 0.3 percent of people younger than 35 years of age to 10 percent of people older than 65 years of age.
  • RA results in 210,000 hospitalizations per year.
  • Eighty percent of people with this disorder have some type of physical limitation as a consequence of the disease.
  • Juvenile rheumatoid arthritis is the most frequently encountered rheumatic condition in children. In 2007, it was estimated that 294,000 children under the age of 18 have been diagnosed with arthritis or other rheumatological condition.

Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE)

  • In 2005, it was estimated that approximately 322,000 people in the United States have or are suspected of having, SLE.
  • SLE disproportionately affects African American women; 4.1 per 1,000 compared to 1.0 per 1,000 for Caucasian women.
  • SLE accounts for approximately 102,000 hospitalizations per year.


  • Estimates for the number of people with systemic sclerosis range from 40,000 to 165,000. By contrast, a survey that included all scleroderma-related disorders, including Raynaud’s phenomenon, suggested a number between 250,000 and 992,500.
  • Prevalence is higher in women than in men and highest in middle-aged women. In the 35- to 44-year-old age group, the ratio of females to males with scleroderma is 9 to 1.
  • Scleroderma is more prevalent in African American women, with approximately 22.5 African-American women affected per million compared to about 12.8 per million for Caucasian women.
  • Scleroderma accounts for approximately 23,000 hospitalizations per year.

Quick Facts

The information on this page relects data on the U.S. population. The primary source is the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Please visit the CDC website for additional data on autoimmune diseases.