Socioeconomic inequalities in prevalence, awareness, treatment and control of hypertension: evidence from the PERSIAN cohort study

BMC Public Health. 2022 Jul 22;22(1):1401. doi: 10.1186/s12889-022-13444-x.


Background: Elevated blood pressure is associated with cardiovascular disease, stroke and chronic kidney disease. In this study, we examined the socioeconomic inequality and its related factors in prevalence, Awareness, Treatment and Control (ATC) of hypertension (HTN) in Iran.

Method: The study used data from the recruitment phase of The Prospective Epidemiological Research Studies in IrAN (PERSIAN). A sample of 162,842 adults aged > = 35 years was analyzed. HTN was defined according to the Joint National Committee)JNC-7(. socioeconomic inequality was measured using concentration index (Cn) and curve.

Results: The mean age of participants was 49.38(SD = ± 9.14) years and 44.74% of the them were men. The prevalence of HTN in the total population was 22.3%(95% CI: 20.6%; 24.1%), and 18.8%(95% CI: 16.8%; 20.9%) and 25.2%(95% CI: 24.2%; 27.7%) in men and women, respectively. The percentage of awareness treatment and control among individuals with HTN were 77.5%(95% CI: 73.3%; 81.8%), 82.2%(95% CI: 70.2%; 81.6%) and 75.9%(95% CI: 70.2%; 81.6%), respectively. The Cn for prevalence of HTN was -0.084. Two factors, age (58.46%) and wealth (32.40%), contributed most to the socioeconomic inequality in the prevalence of HTN.

Conclusion: The prevalence of HTN was higher among low-SES individuals, who also showed higher levels of awareness. However, treatment and control of HTN were more concentrated among those who had higher levels of SES, indicating that people at a higher risk of adverse event related to HTN (the low SES individuals) are not benefiting from the advantage of treatment and control of HTN. Such a gap between diagnosis (prevalence) and control (treatment and control) of HTN needs to be addressed by public health policymakers.

Keywords: Awareness; Control; Hypertension; Inequality; PERSIAN Cohort; Treatment.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Cohort Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hypertension* / diagnosis
  • Hypertension* / epidemiology
  • Hypertension* / therapy
  • Iran / epidemiology
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prevalence
  • Prospective Studies
  • Risk Factors
  • Socioeconomic Factors