Blood pressure up among young adults

THE incidence of hypertension in young US adults may be much higher than previously reported, a study has suggested.

Researchers analysed data on more than 15,000 young people, aged 24–32 years in 2008, from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health. 

It showed 19% were hypertensive, well over the 4% indicated in another widely cited and reputable study – the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey – which looked at a similar age group around the same time. 

“Our respective findings may differ, but the message is clear,” researchers said.

“Young adults and the medical professionals they visit shouldn’t assume they’re not old enough to have high blood pressure.”

Epidemiology 2011, online 23 May