At least 18 million Americans have type 2 diabetes (diabetes mellitus) and another 40 million are estimated to have pre-diabetes. The direct medical costs of this disease have doubled in the past five years, from $44 billion in 1997 to $92 billion in 2002. Total annual costs in medical expenditures and lost productivity have soared from $98 billion to $132 billion, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
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