Prevalence and patterns of hypertension in Peruvian Andean Hispanics: the PREVENCION study

J Am Soc Hypertens. May-Jun 2007;1(3):216-25. doi: 10.1016/j.jash.2007.02.003.


Cardiovascular disease is emerging as a leading cause of morbidity and mortality in Latin America. Population-based data regarding the prevalence of hypertension and hypertension subtypes in Andean Hispanic populations are scarce. The authors performed a population-based study that included 1878 Peruvian Andean adults to determine: (1) the prevalence, awareness, and control of hypertension and (2) the relative frequency of hypertension subtypes (systolic vs. diastolic). The prevalence of hypertension was 15.7% (95% confidence interval [CI], 14.0%-17.4%), did not differ by gender, and increased steeply with age, particularly in women. Awareness, treatment, and control rates were 47.9%, 39.5%, and 14%, respectively. Diastolic blood pressure increased until age 50 years and reached a plateau thereafter, whereas mean arterial pressure continued to increase with age even after age 50 years. Furthermore, in sharp contrast with the United States population, the predominant type of hypertension was systodiastolic (41.7%; 95% CI, 35.1%-48.5%). Isolated systolic hypertension accounted for only 29.3% of cases (95% CI, 23.9%-35.4%) and was responsible for a minority of cases in all age groups before age 70 years. Hypertension subtypes in this Andean population seem to differ significantly from those present in the United States population, with a much larger proportion of systodiastolic and diastolic hypertension even with advanced age. These differences result from interactions between hemodynamic and structural factors, and further studies aimed at characterizing their genetic and environmental determinants and implications in end-organ damage and prognosis in this population may contribute to understanding the pathophysiology of hypertension.