A study conducted by a team of researchers at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill indicate that almost one in five young adults in the United States may suffer from high blood pressure. The results of the research, which were revealed on Wednesday, suggest that hypertension may be more prevalent that what is generally believed.
A feature on Fox News shared that the new research presented a different picture from that of a federal government study conducted by the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. The latter indicated that only a small percentage – 4 percent – of young adults suffered from hypertension, a condition which was defined in both studies as having a blood pressure reading of 140/90 mmHg.
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill doctoral student Quynh Nguyen said that “the findings are significant because they indicate that many young adults are at risk of developing heart disease, but are unaware that they have hypertension.”
The study made use of data provided by the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health (Add Health), which is funded by the National Institutes of Health. The analysis included data from more than 14,000 participants, consisting of men and women between the ages of 24 and 32 years old, in 2008.
The results of the analysis indicated that 19 percent of the test population had high blood pressure – but only about half of them know that they have it.
Kathleen Mullan Harris, who led the study, shared: “Young adults and the medical professionals they visit shouldn’t assume they’re not old enough to have high blood pressure. This is a condition that leads to chronic illness, premature death and costly medical treatment.”