Hypertension Prevalence in New York City Adults: Unmasking Undetected Racial/Ethnic Variation, NYC HANES 2004

Ashley E. Giambrone, Linda M. Gerber, Jesica S. Rodriguez-Lopez, Chau Trinh-Shervin, Nadia Islam, Lorna E. Thorpe


Objective: Using 2004 New York City Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NYC HANES) data, we sought to examine variation in hypertension (HTN) prevalence across eight Asian and Hispanic subgroups. 

Design: Cross-sectional 

Setting: New York City, 2004 

Main Outcome Measures: Logistic regression was performed to identify differences in HTN prevalence between ethnic subgroups controlling for age, sex, education and BMI. 

Results: Overall HTN prevalence among NYC adults was 25.5% (95% CI: 23.4-27.8), with 21.1% (95% CI: 18.2-24.3) among Whites, 32.8% (95% CI: 28.7-37.2) Black, 26.4% (95% CI: 22.3-31.0) Hispanics, and 24.7% (95% CI: 19.9-30.3) Asians. Among Hispanic subgroups, Dominicans had the highest HTN prevalence (32.2%), followed by Puerto Ricans (27.7%), while Mexicans had the lowest prevalence (8.1%). Among Asian subgroups, HTN prevalence was slightly higher among South Asians (29.9%) than among Chinese (21.3%). Adjusting for age, Dominican adults were nearly twice as likely to have HTN as non-Hispanic (NH) Whites (OR=1.96, 95% CI: 1.24-3.12), but this was attenuated after adjusting for sex and education (OR=1.27, 95% CI: .76 – 2.12). When comparing South Asians with NH Whites, results were also non-significant after adjustment (OR=2.00, 95% CI: .90-4.43). 

Conclusion: When analyzing racial/ethnic subgroups, NH Black and Hispanic adults from Dominican Republic had the highest HTN prevalence followed by South Asian and Puerto Rican adults. Mexican adults had the lowest prevalence of all groups. These findings highlight that ethnic subgroup differences go undetected when stratified by broader racial/ ethnic categories. To our knowledge, this is the first population-based study using objective measures to highlight these differences. Ethn Dis. 2016;26(3):339-344; doi:10.18865/ed.26.3.339 


Hypertension; Race/Ethnicity; Hispanic Subgroups; Asian Subgroups; New York City

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.18865/ed.26.3.339


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