Pain -- A $61 Billion Price Tag For U.S. Economy

By Agence France-Presse Migraines, back pain, arthritis and a raft of other painful ailments take a toll on U.S. economic productivity to the tune of some $61.2 billion a year, a study has found. Nearly 13% of the active U.S. workforce reports loss of work time due to pain at least once every two weeks, resulting in slower work but rarely absenteeism, the authors of the study published by the "Journal of the American Medical Association" said. The most commonly reported was headache pain, (5.4%), followed by back pain (3.2%), arthritic pain (2%) or other sources of muscular or bone pain, according to the telephone polling of 28,902 working people. People suffering from headache pain reported losing three and one-half hours of work a week, but those with back pain said they lost more than five working hours a week due to their discomfort, according to the study by the Center for Health Research and Rural Advocacy in Danville, Pa. Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2003

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