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Hypertension. 2008 Nov;52(5):818-27. doi: 10.1161/HYPERTENSIONAHA.108.113357. Epub 2008 Oct 13.

Trends in hypertension prevalence, awareness, treatment, and control rates in United States adults between 1988-1994 and 1999-2004.

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US Department of Health and Human Services, National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD 20892, USA.


This study assesses trends in hypertension prevalence, blood pressure distributions and mean levels, and hypertension awareness, treatment, and control among US adults, age >or=18 years, between the third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (1988-1994) and the 1999-2004 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, a period of approximately 10 years. The age-standardized prevalence rate increased from 24.4% to 28.9% (P<0.001), with the largest increases among non-Hispanic women. Depending on gender and race/ethnicity, from one fifth to four fifths of the increase could be accounted for by increasing body mass index. Among hypertensive persons, there were modest increases in awareness (P=0.04), from 68.5% to 71.8%. The rate for men increased from 61.6% to 69.3% (P=0.001), whereas the rate for women did not change significantly. Rates remained higher for women than for men, although the difference narrowed considerably. Improvements in treatment and control rates were larger: 53.1% to 61.4% and 26.1% to 35.1%, respectively (both P<0.001). The greatest increases occurred among non-Hispanic white men and non-Hispanic black persons, especially men. Mexican American persons showed improvement in treatment and control rates, but these rates remained the lowest among race/ethnic subgroups (47.4% and 24.3%, respectively). Among all of the race/ethnic groups, women continued to have somewhat better awareness, treatment, and control, except for control rates among non-Hispanic white persons, which became higher in men. Differences between non-Hispanic black and white persons in awareness, treatment, and control were small. These divergent trends may translate into disparate trends in cardiovascular disease morbidity and mortality.

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