This section of Hands on Health-SC focuses on diseases and health conditions which are major problems in South Carolina. The list is based on Healthy People Living in Healthy Communities 2009 Report, the annual report of the SC Department of Health and Environmental Control. The link above requires Adobe Acrobat Reader. If you are unable to view or download this article, get Acrobat Reader. Select a topic to learn more about: What the health condition is What causes it How to find out if you are at risk or already have it How to lower your risk Treatment options Where to find medical help or assistance

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Breathing Disorders
When breathing becomes difficult on a regular basis or coughing uncontrollably becomes a frequent problem, you might have a chronic breathing disorder. Breathing problems can be the result of many different conditions, such as Asthma, Chronic Bronchitis, or Emphysema. These are called chronic lower respiratory diseases. In 2007, these diseases were the fifth leading cause of deaths in South Carolina.
Cancer is the leading cause of death among South Carolinians. Cancers strike all age groups, genders, and races, but African Americans are more likely to die from certain cancers, like breast cancer and prostate cancer. We can do a lot to lower our risk of cancer by making better decisions about lifestyle and nutrition.
Cardiovascular Diseases
Heart disease and stroke are the principal components of cardiovascular disease (CVD). CVD claims 35 lives a day in South Carolina, making it the leading cause of death. High blood pressure is a major risk factor for both CVD and stroke. In this section, you can learn how to treat and prevent High Blood Pressure, Heart Disease, and Stroke and Brain Attack.
Dental and Oral Disease
Tooth decay can lead to pain, absences from school and from work. It can also lead to health problems like sinus or gum infections, toothache, and tooth loss. In spite of the progress made in preventing tooth decay, almost 25% of children and over 25% of adults still have untreated tooth decay. Good oral hygiene and preventive services can save time and money, improve health and increase self-esteem.
Diabetes is the seventh leading cause of death in South Carolina. This chronic disease is a national health problem, as the incidence rises and the age of those affected goes down. Diabetes, also commonly called "sugar" in the blood, is a serious, lifelong illness. Over 8 percent of South Carolinians have been told they have diabetes. But you can manage diabetes and you can lower your risk of getting it.
Family Violence
There were 51,713 victims of domestic violence in South Carolina in 2008. Eighty-seven of those victims died. South Carolina is ranked seventh in the nation for the number of women killed by men. In 2007-2008, there were over 17,000 confirmed cases of child abuse. The societal and economic toll on your community is great. Here you can learn to identify abuse and how to stop it.
Health Disparities
Some diseases strike and kill minority South Carolinians at higher rates than whites. Our state is not alone. Health disparities are a problem nationwide. How we address these issues will have a very personal impact on the lives of many South Carolinians.
In 2007, 742 cases of AIDS were newly diagnosed. There are now over 14,000 diagnosed cases of AIDS in South Carolina. There are over 23,000 cases of HIV. Nearly thirty percent of those are women. Nearly three-quarters of those are African Americans. It is important to know how to lower your risk for AIDS and what to do if you think you – or someone you care about – are at risk.
Influenza (FLU)
CDC scientists estimate that every year, 5% to 20% of the population gets the flu. Each year, more than 200,000 people are hospitalized from flu complications and about 36,000 people die from flu. In 2007, South Carolina had 728 flu and pneumonia deaths. According to the Centers for Disease Control, a higher percentage of minorities are affected by the flu. Learn how to stop the flu from reaching your home.
Metabolic Syndrome
Metabolic syndrome is not a specific disease, but it indicates a higher risk of developing serious diseases like type 2 diabetes, kidney failure, heart disease, and stroke. Metabolic syndrome is the condition of having several health problems at the same time. Some of these problems are insulin resistance, high blood pressure, obesity, and abnormal cholesterol levels. In South Carolina, where 61% of adults are overweight and 26% are obese, 9% have diabetes, and almost 30% have high blood pressure, metabolic syndrome is a serious health problem. Find out what you can do to decrease your risk.
Suicide was the 10th leading cause of death in the U.S. in 2007. It is the 3rd leading cause of death among 15-24-year-olds. Learning more about suicide and depression can help you see when you or someone else needs help.
Obesity has become an epidemic crossing age, racial and economic boundaries. Two out of three adults in the United States are overweight or obese. South Carolina’s adult obesity rate of 65% was 6th highest in the nation in 2008. Children have also become much heavier. Obesity leads to serious health issues. A healthy diet and regular physical activity will help prevent obesity and the health issues it causes.

Last Modified: Thursday September 26, 2019 9:09 AM