Mortality Rate in Adults With Hypertension Has Fallen

But mortality gap remains between those with and without high blood pressure

TUESDAY, April 26 (HealthDay News) -- The all-cause mortality rate among hypertensive adults has dropped in recent decades, but the mortality gap between adults with and without hypertension has remained constant, according to research published in the April 26 issue of Circulation.

Earl S. Ford, M.D., M.P.H., of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, examined data from 10,852 participants aged 25 to 74 in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) I Epidemiological Follow-Up Study (1971 to 1975) and from 12,420 participants of the NHANES III Linked Mortality Study (1988 to 1994). Mean follow-up times were 17.5 and 14.2 years, respectively.

The researchers found that, in both cohorts, mortality rates were higher in men and women with hypertension than in those without; among adults with hypertension, mortality was higher among men than women and among blacks than whites. The age-adjusted mortality rate among all participants with hypertension dropped from 18.8 per 1,000 person years for the earlier cohort to 14.3 per 1,000 person years in the later cohort.

"The mortality rate decreased among hypertensive adults, but the mortality gap between adults with and without hypertension remained relatively constant. Efforts are needed to accelerate the decrease in the mortality rate among hypertensive adults," the author writes.

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