Studies of blood pressures in children, ages 5-14 years, in a total biracial community: the Bogalusa Heart Study

Circulation. 1976 Aug;54(2):319-27. doi: 10.1161/01.cir.54.2.319.


Blood pressure, height, weight, maturation, triceps skinfold thickness, serum lipids, and hemoglobin were measured as risk factors for coronary artery disease in 3,524 children (93% of the eligible population) in Bogalusa, Louisiana. Nine blood pressures were taken on each child by trained observers with mercury sphygmomanometers (Baumanometer) and Physiometrics automatic recorders in a rigid randomized design in a relaxed atmosphere with other children present. The pressures observed were low compared to reported data. Black children had significantly higher blood pressures than white children. This difference, starting before age 10, was largest in the children in the upper five percent of the pressure ranks. Stepwise multiple regression analysis revealed that this racial differnce was significant when measured by an automatic recorder. Body size, expressed by height and by weight/height3 index, was a strong determinant of blood pressure level. Other positive determinants were blood hemoglobin and external maturation.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • African Continental Ancestry Group*
  • Age Factors
  • Blood Pressure Determination / instrumentation
  • Blood Pressure*
  • Body Height
  • Body Weight
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • European Continental Ancestry Group*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Louisiana
  • Male
  • Regression Analysis
  • Sex Factors