Study: Minorities Less Likely to Seek Treatment for High Blood Pressure

high blood pressureOne in three American adults has high blood pressure, also known as hypertension, and many don’t even know. Complications of high blood pressure include damage to the heart, arteries, brain, kidneys and eyes. High blood pressure also increases one’s risk for developing type 2 diabetes, a chronic condition that causes a high level of sugar (glucose) in the blood and can lead to heart disease.

The percentages of adults receiving treatment for high blood pressure have improved over the past few decades. However, a recent study found that members of two high-risk minority groups are less likely to have high blood pressure under control.

Blacks, Hispanics Lag in Treatment and Control

Researchers looked at data taken from the 2003-2012 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey in an effort to examine racial differences in the use of hypertension drugs and blood pressure control. The study included data from nearly 8,800 adults. Researchers found that while just under 74% of non-Hispanic whites with high blood pressure were being treated for the condition, only 70.8% of black patients were getting the same treatment. The percentage was even lower for Hispanic patients at 60.7%.

Researchers also evaluated the percentages of patients in each racial group who had their high blood pressure under control, which was defined as below 140/90 mg Hg for those without chronic kidney disease or diabetes and below 130/80 mm Hg for those with either condition. High blood pressure control rates were 42.9% for non-Hispanic whites, 36.9% for blacks and 31.2% for Hispanics.

The study also found that the disparity in blood pressure control rates between whites and the two minority groups was even wider in younger and uninsured patients.

Get Answers at RediClinic

Lifestyle changes and medication can lower your blood pressure and reduce your risk of heart disease – but you must be tested first. RediClinic offers a comprehensive range of heart health tests, including testing for high blood pressure. We also provide comprehensive diabetes testing for individuals with a family history of the disease, or for anyone who has a concern.

When it comes to your health, it’s important to stay in the know. Even if you do not currently have insurance coverage, RediClinic is an affordable walk-in clinic with low out-of-pocket costs. Make an online appointment to be seen at RediClinic same-day or next-day!