Time course study of blood pressure in children over a three-year period. Bogalusa Heart Study

Hypertension. 1980 Jul-Aug;2(4 Pt 2):102-8.


Indirect blood pressure (BP) was measured by mercury sphygmomanometer on 3524 children, ages 5-14 years, representative of a defined geographic population. Year 1 to Year 4 correlations ranged from 0.52 to 0.63 systolic blood pressure (SBP) and from 0.23 to 0.45 diastolic 4th phase blood pressure (DBP4). Some 55% of those originally in the upper decile remained in the uppermost two deciles 3 years later. All children ages 5, 8, 11, and 14 years were reexamined annually, and the mean year-to-year standard deviation (SD) within the child was computed to be 5.5 mm Hg SBP and 5.9 mm Hg DBP. After 3 years, for all available children (n = 2601) the age-specific cross-sectional SD was found to be 8.7-9.7 mm Hg SBP and 7.6-8.0 mm Hg DBP. These data enabled us to quantify the regression to the mean due to within-child variation for the uppermost and the lowest decile BP, using the Gardner-Heady model. These children had an average BP at examination that differed from the expected level (adjusting for regression to the mean due to within-child variation) by 1 mm Hg SBP and DBP. Quantification of the degree to which children's BP "tracks" is important for early diagnosis and intervention in high BP.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Anthropometry
  • Blood Pressure Determination
  • Blood Pressure*
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Diastole
  • Humans
  • Hypertension / diagnosis
  • Hypertension / prevention & control
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Louisiana
  • Risk
  • Statistics as Topic
  • Systole