Prevalence, awareness, treatment and control of hypertension in the elderly population of Singapore

Hypertens Res. 2010 Dec;33(12):1223-31. doi: 10.1038/hr.2010.177. Epub 2010 Sep 30.


A comprehensive picture of the management of hypertension in the increasing elderly population in Singapore is lacking. In this study, we assess the prevalence and correlates of hypertension and of awareness, treatment and control of hypertension among 4494 elderly Singaporeans (≥60 years) participating in a recent representative survey. The weighted prevalences of hypertension (systolic blood pressure ≥140 mm Hg or diastolic blood pressure ≥90 mm Hg or current use of antihypertension medication) and of awareness, treatment and control of hypertension were assessed. We assessed the extent of association of these outcomes with socio-demographic (age, gender, ethnicity, education, housing type, living arrangement and social participation) and health (body mass, diabetes and cognitive status) variables using multivariable logistic regression. Nearly three-fourths (73.9%) of participants were found to have hypertension. Of this number, 30.8% were unaware that they had hypertension, 32.0% were not being treated for the disease and 75.9% had suboptimal control of their blood pressure. Among those aware of their hypertension, only 1.9% were untreated. However, nearly two-thirds (64.5%) of treated hypertensives had suboptimal control. Age, gender, ethnicity, education, housing type, body mass and diabetes were significantly correlated with lack of awareness, treatment and control of hypertension. Although the specific 'at-risk' subgroups varied by the outcome, men and Malays had consistently higher odds for all three unfavorable outcomes. There is a need to improve awareness, treatment and especially control of hypertension among elderly Singaporeans. Primary and secondary prevention efforts targeting the elderly and their primary health-care providers are called for, as are regular data collection efforts based on representative samples.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Age Factors
  • Aged
  • Aging / physiology*
  • Awareness*
  • Blood Pressure
  • Chi-Square Distribution
  • Female
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice
  • Health Status
  • Health Surveys
  • Humans
  • Hypertension / epidemiology*
  • Hypertension / prevention & control
  • Hypertension / therapy*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prevalence
  • Singapore / epidemiology
  • Social Isolation
  • Social Participation