Almost Half of U.S. Adults Have at Least One CVD Risk Factor

About 47 percent have high blood pressure, high levels of LDL cholesterol, and/or smoke cigarettes

FRIDAY, Aug. 3 (HealthDay News) -- In 2009 to 2010, almost half of U.S. adults age 20 or older had at least one of three major risk factors for cardiovascular disease (CVD), according to an August data brief issued by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS).

Cheryl D. Fryar, M.S.P.H., from the NCHS in Hyattsville, Md., and colleagues used data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey to present the most recent trends for three CVD risk factors: uncontrolled high blood pressure, uncontrolled high levels of low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C), and current cigarette smoking among adults aged 20 years and older.

The researchers found that, in 2009 to 2010, approximately 47 percent of adults had one or more of these three risk factors for CVD, with men more likely than women to have at least one risk factor. There was a decrease noted, from 1999-2000 to 2009-2010, in the percentage of non-Hispanic white and Mexican-American adults who had at least one of these three risk factors. Among non-Hispanic black adults this decrease was not observed. From 1999-2000 to 2009-2010 there was a decrease in the prevalence of uncontrolled high blood pressure and high LDL-C, but there was no significant change in the percentage of adults who smoked cigarettes.

"These findings may provide useful information for monitoring the U.S. adult population for risk factors that could lead to CVD," the authors write.

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