Stage 1 hypertension, but not elevated blood pressure, predicts 10-year fatal and non-fatal CVD events in healthy adults

The ATTICA Study

the ATTICA Study group

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The study evaluated the extent to which high normal blood pressure (HNBP), elevated BP, and Stage 1 hypertension predict 10-year incidence of cardiovascular disease (CVD). A population-based, prospective cohort study was conducted among 3042 randomly selected Greek adults, aged 18–89 years. Following 10-years follow-up (2002–2012), incidence of non-fatal and fatal CVD (ICD-10) was achieved in 2020 participants. The analytic sample (n = 1403) excluded hypertensive patients. At baseline, the prevalence rate of HNBP, elevated BP, and Stage 1 hypertension was 44.6% (n = 626), 29.0% (n = 408), and 15.5% (n = 218), respectively. During follow-up, the 10-year combined (fatal or non-fatal) CVD incidence rates in HNBP, elevated BP, and Stage 1 hypertensive individuals were 15.6% (n = 98), 12.0% (n = 49), and 22.5% (n = 49), respectively, as compared to 6.3% (n = 49) in normotensives (all p’s < 0.0001). As compared to normotensives (and following the adjustment for known demographic, lifestyle and clinical confounding factors), HNBP participants had a 1.5-fold (Adjusted Hazard Ratio, Adj. HR: 1.49; 95% CI: 1.00–2.20) increased risk of 10-year CVD events. Similarly, Stage 1 hypertensive participants had an approximately twofold (Adj. HR: 1.90; 95% CI: 1.16–3.08) increased risk for 10-year CVD, particularly among males (Adj. HR: 2.03; 95% CI: 1.08–3.83). However, individuals with elevated BP did not exhibit a differential risk for developing 10-year CVD events (Adj. HR: 1.28; 95% CI: 0.82–2.02). Therefore, since HNBP and Stage 1 hypertension individuals exhibit a notable increased risk of 10-year fatal and non-fatal CVD, the implementation of targeted primary and secondary prevention interventions may deter both CVD and related adverse health outcomes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)308-318
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Human Hypertension
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2019


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