240599 Underreporting of Hypertension among Older Chinese Adults

Monday, October 31, 2011

SangNam Ahn, PhD, MPSA , Social and Behavioral Health, Texas A&M Health Science Center School of Rural Public Health, College Station, TX
Josue G. Martinez, PhD , Epidemiology & Biostatistics, Texas A&M Health Science Center School of Rural Public Health, College Station, TX
Matthew Lee Smith, PhD, MPH, CHES , Department of Health Promotion and Behavior, The University of Georgia, College of Public Health, Athens, GA
Marcia G. Ory, PhD, MPH , Social & Behavioral Health, Texas A&M HSC School of Rural Public Health, College Station, TX
Background. Hypertension severely affects older Chinese adults, with more than half of those aged 60 years or older estimated to have hypertensive symptomology. The purpose of this study is to examine the extent to which older Chinese adults underreport their hypertension, and factors associated with this underreporting.

Methods. We included 2,503 adults aged 60 years or older clinically identified as hypertensive from the panel data surveyed in 1997, 2000, 2004, and 2006 as part of the China Health and Nutrition Survey (CHNS). This was compared to respondents' self-reports to estimate hypertension underreporting. Covariates included sociodemographic, health status, functional disability, and behavioral factors. Generalized estimating equations (GEE) were used to identify risk factors for underreporting hypertension.

Results. More than 60% of study participants underreported hypertension. Those who underreported in a previous survey wave, lived in rural area, or had more severe categories of hypertension were more likely to underreport hypertension. Inversely, those who had higher incomes or had acute conditions were less likely to underreport hypertension.

Significance of the work. The current study is one of few to explore factors associated with hypertension underreporting among an older Chinese adult sample who significantly underreported their hypertensive status. Studying dynamics of hypertension underreporting can be meaningful for clinician their doctor-patient discussions as well as policymakers who design services around population need.

Learning Areas:
Administer health education strategies, interventions and programs
Chronic disease management and prevention
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Public health or related education
Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
1. Identify risk factors that contribute to underreporting of hypertension among older Chinese adults. 2. Explore relationships between underreporting hypertension and the severity of participantsí hypertension level. 3. Identify policy implications of underreporting of hypertension among older Chinese adults.

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have researched topics regarding obesity and chronic conditions including hypertension since my doctoral program and until now as a postdoctoral research associate at Texas A&M Health Science Center.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.