Paralysis Far More Common Than Previously Thought, Survey Says
More than 5.6 million Americans — or nearly 1 in 50 — live with some form of paralysis, according to a new survey from the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation.
That is significantly higher than two previous estimates, one which put the population at 250,000 and another which estimated about 4 million people live with paralysis.
The new data is based on a survey of 33,000 households and indicates that 40 percent more Americans are living with paralysis than previously thought. The condition disproportionately affects African Americans and Native Americans. People with paralysis are also more likely to be poor, data indicate.
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Meanwhile, 1.275 million Americans have spinal cord injuries, over five times the number previously estimated, the survey shows.