MedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Shakia Hardy, MPH, CPH. PhD
Department of Epidemiology
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?
Response: Previous studies characterizing blood pressure levels across the life course have relied on prevalence estimates at a given age.
Our study was interested in identifying critical ages at which net transitions between levels of blood pressure occurred. We used data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (2007-2012) to estimate age-, race-, and sex-specific annual net transition probabilities between ideal blood pressure, prehypertension and hypertension.
We found that African Americans and men were more likely to transition from ideal levels of blood pressure in childhood or early adulthood compared to white Americans and women, which puts them at increased risk of developing prehypertension and hypertension earlier in life.