The prevalence of arthritis tended to be higher in eastern U.S. states than in western states in 2011, according to a report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

All seven states with an arthritis rate below 22% were located west of the Mississippi River, with Hawaii having the lowest rate at 18.2%, followed by Utah (19.8%) and Texas (20.2%). The District of Columbia, which is in the East, had an arthritis rate of 20.9%.

The eight states with an arthritis rate greater than 29% were all east of the Mississippi, with West Virginia having the highest prevalence (35.9%), followed by Kentucky (31.9%) and Michigan (31.0%), according to the report (MMWR 2014;63[SS09]:1-149).

Of 198 reported metropolitan and micropolitan statistical areas (MMSAs), 29 had an arthritis prevalence lower than 20%. Lawrence, Kan., had the lowest rate at 13.5%. Of the 29, only Atlanta; Knoxville, Tenn.; and Raleigh, N.C., are located entirely east of the Mississippi River. Kingsport-Bristol, in Tennessee and Virginia, had the highest arthritis rate at 37%. Of the 16 MMSAs with an arthritis rate greater than 30%, North Platte, Neb., was the only one west of the Mississippi, according to data from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System.


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