Multiple Chronic Conditions and Use of Complementary and Alternative Medicine Among US Adults: Results From the 2012 National Health Interview Survey.

Author: Falci L1, Shi Z2, Greenlee H3
1722 W. 168th St, 7th Floor, New York, NY 10032. Email:
2Department of Epidemiology, Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University, New York, New York.
3Department of Epidemiology, Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University, and Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer Center, Columbia University Medical Center, New York, New York.
Conference/Journal: Prev Chronic Dis.
Date published: 2016 May 5
Other: Volume ID: 13 , Pages: E61 , Special Notes: doi: 10.5888/pcd13.150501. , Word Count: 204

INTRODUCTION: More than 25% of American adults report having 2 or more chronic conditions. People with chronic conditions often use complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) for self-care and disease management, despite a limited evidence base.

METHODS: Data from the 2012 National Health Interview Survey (NHIS) (n = 33,557) were analyzed to assess associations between presence of multiple chronic conditions (n = 13) and CAM use, using multivariable relative risk and linear regressions weighted for complex NHIS sampling. CAM use was defined as self-reported use of one or more of 16 therapies in the previous 12 months.

RESULTS: Chronic conditions were common. US adults reported one (22.3%) or 2 or more (33.8%) conditions. Many used at least one form of CAM. Multivitamins, multiminerals, or both (52.7%); vitamins (34.8%); and minerals (28.4%) were the most common. Compared with adults with no conditions, adults with 2 or more conditions were more likely to use multivitamins or multiminerals or both, vitamins, minerals, nonvitamins or herbs, mind-body therapies, chiropractic or osteopathic manipulation, massage, movement therapies, special diets, acupuncture, naturopathy, or some combination of these therapies (P <.003).

CONCLUSION: People with multiple chronic conditions have a high prevalence of CAM use. Longitudinal studies are needed to understand the association between CAM use and chronic disease prevention and treatment.

PMID: 27149072 [PubMed - in process] Free full text