Background: The prevention and control of hypertension is an essential component for reducing the burden of cardiovascular diseases. Here we describe the prevalence of hypertension in diverse Hispanic/Latino background groups and describe the proportion who are aware of their diagnosis, receiving treatment, and having their hypertension under control.
Methods: The Hispanic Community Health Study/Study of Latinos is a longitudinal cohort study of 16,415 Hispanics/Latinos, aged 18-74 years from 4 US communities (Bronx, NY; Chicago, IL; Miami, FL; and San Diego, CA). At baseline (2008-2011) the study collected extensive measurements and completed questionnaires related to research on cardiovascular diseases. Hypertension was defined as measured blood pressure ≥140/90mm Hg or use of antihypertensive medication.
Results: The total age-adjusted prevalence of hypertension in this study was 25.5% as compared with 27.4% in non-Hispanic whites in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. Prevalence of hypertension increased with increasing age groups and was highest in Cuban, Puerto Rican, and Dominican background groups. The percent with hypertension who were aware, being treated with medication, or had their hypertension controlled was lower compared with US non-Hispanic whites with hypertension and it was lowest in those without health insurance.
Conclusions: These findings indicate a significant deficit in treatment and control of hypertension among Hispanics/Latinos residing in the United States, particularly those without health insurance. Given the relative ease of identification of hypertension and the availability of low-cost medications, enabling better access to diagnostic and treatment services should reduce the burden of hypertension in Hispanic populations.
Keywords: Hispanics; Latinos; blood pressure; epidemiology; hypertension; medically uninsured; socioeconomic status..