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patient education

College Students Living with a Chronic Condition

key information

source: Center for Online Education


The term “chronic conditions” may apply to a wide range of medical conditions. Traditionally, it refers to a disease that affected college students must continually mitigate against (typically with medication and/or physical therapy) for an indefinite period of time. The CDC lists stroke, heart disease, cancer, diabetes, and arthritis as five of the most common chronic illnesses found among all U.S. citizens; in recent years, obesity has also been included on this list.

Other illnesses that occur less frequently but are still considered “chronic” include:

• Asthma
• Crohn’s disease
• Epilepsy
• Hemophilia
• Hypertension
• Lupus
• Multiple sclerosis
• Parkinson’s disease
• Ulcerative colitis

Additionally, psychological conditions like bipolar mood disorder and schizophrenia also impact college students on a chronic basis. Chronic conditions that impact daily life like blindness, deafness, or partial paralysis are classified as disabilities, not chronic illnesses.

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