High blood pressure common among black young adults

AP

Print Article

About 1 in 4 young adults has high blood pressure. But few are getting treated, with new research concluding black young adults are especially vulnerable.

In a study that included 15,171 black, Mexican American and white adults, researchers found that nearly 31% of black young adults had high blood pressure, also known as hypertension. It was the highest rate among the three groups studied.

"Young adults are often left out of cardiovascular disease studies," said Dr. Vibhu Parcha, a clinical research fellow at the University of Alabama in Birmingham. "But to prevent heart disease and the racial disparities we see in older adults, we need to start looking at younger populations."

Parcha will present the preliminary study Sunday at the American Heart Association's Scientific Sessions conference in Philadelphia.

Many adults with high blood pressure remain undiagnosed, while others who have been diagnosed do not have their disease properly controlled.

"When young adults have high blood pressure that is not controlled, they begin accumulating cardiovascular risk at a very young age," said Dr. Cheryl Himmelfarb, professor and vice dean for research at Johns Hopkins School of Nursing in Baltimore. This, in turn, puts them at risk for having a heart attack or stroke at an early age, she said.

Parcha and his colleagues also studied changes over time in young adults' awareness, treatment and control of high blood pressure. They noted the "

"We found that black young adults have higher awareness and higher treatment rates than the other groups," said Parcha. "But control rates of their disease are poorer than what is seen in middle-aged and older adults."

Social factors and biology might both play a part in these disparities.

Previous studies have found high blood pressure is more common among black adults than adults of other races. The new study sheds light on how early this disparity begins.

"We need to understand the social and economic determinants that influence high blood pressure care behaviors," said Himmelfarb, who was not involved with the study.

"We also need to ensure health care providers understand that these disparities exist so that they are screening for and effectively managing high blood pressure in young adults who they might otherwise see as healthy."

Risk factors for high blood pressure include not getting enough exercise, an unhealthy diet, being overweight or obese, drinking too much alcohol, high cholesterol, smoking and diabetes.

"Hopefully this study will drive us to allocate resources to research young adults and lifestyle modification interventions tailored to meet the needs of this very high-risk population," Himmelfarb said.

If you have questions or comments about this story, please email editor@heart.org. 

American Heart Association News covers heart disease, stroke and related health issues. Not all views expressed in American Heart Association News stories reflect the official position of the American Heart Association.

Copyright is owned or held by the American Heart Association, Inc., and all rights are reserved. Permission is granted, at no cost and without need for further request, to link to, quote, excerpt or reprint from these stories in any medium as long as no text is altered and proper attribution is made to the American Heart Association News. See full terms of use.

HEALTH CARE DISCLAIMER: This site and its services do not constitute the practice of medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always talk to your health care provider for diagnosis and treatment, including your specific medical needs. If you have or suspect that you have a medical problem or condition, please contact a qualified health care professional immediately. If you are in the United States and experiencing a medical emergency, call 911 or call for emergency medical help immediately.

Print Article

Read More National News

Here's how black barbershops could save lives and millions in health costs

AP

December 06, 2019 at 2:08 pm | A national program to fight high blood pressure by sending pharmacists to black barbershops could prevent thousands of strokes, heart attacks and deaths, and save the health care system $870 million ...

Comments

Read More

Website Errors Raise Calls For Medicare To Be Flexible With Seniors’ Enrollment

AP

December 06, 2019 at 5:00 am | Saturday is the deadline for most people with Medicare coverage to sign up for private drug and medical plans for next year. But members of Congress, health care advocates and insurance agents worry ...

Comments

Read More

Patient-Induced Trauma: Hospitals Learn To Defuse Violence

AP

December 06, 2019 at 5:00 am | SAN DIEGO — When Mary Prehoden gets dressed for work every morning, her eyes lock on the bite-shaped scar on her chest. It’s a harsh reminder of one of the worst days of her life. Prehoden, a nur...

Comments

Read More

Black Mothers Get Less Treatment For Postpartum Depression Than Other Moms

AP

December 06, 2019 at 5:00 am | Portia Smith’s most vivid memories of her daughter’s first year are of tears. Not the baby’s. Her own. “I would just hold her and cry all day,” Smith said. At 18, Smith was caring for two chi...

Comments

Read More

Contact Us

(208) 263-9534
PO Box 159
Sandpoint, ID 83864

©2019 Bonner County Daily Bee Terms of Use Privacy Policy
X