Learn About Hypertension
Hypertension is one of the most prevalent health conditions facing Americans. In fact, 68 million Americans – 1 in every 3 U.S. adults – have hypertension, and nearly 20 percent do not know they have it.
Many patients with hypertension visit your medical groups every day for treatment of the disease or other health concerns. Health care professionals play a vital role in ensuring that patients receive the care needed to manage hypertension through lifestyle changes and/or medication adherence.
Without control of hypertension, the deadly disease can result in other serious health problems, including heart disease, heart failure, stroke, kidney failure, and diabetes complications. Hypertension contributes to nearly 1,000 deaths a day in the United States.
Likewise, costs of the disease are staggering; financial expenses alone (including health care services, medications, and missed days of work) are estimated at $156 billion.
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Across the country, more than 140 American Medical Group Association medical groups have joined Measure Up/Pressure Down® to help their patients gain control of hypertension and live healthier lives. Together, we can change current statistics and achieve lasting improvements that lead the way to greater health, productivity, and cost savings.
- Less than half of people with hypertension have their condition under control.
- Hypertension contributes to nearly 1,000 deaths a day.
- Approximately 20 percent of U.S. adults who have hypertension do not know they have it.
- Almost 30 percent of American adults have prehypertension, which raises the risk of developing hypertension.
- Sixty-nine percent of people who have a first heart attack, 77 percent of people who have a first stroke, and 74 percent of people with chronic heart failure have hypertension.
- In 2009, nearly 350,000 American deaths included hypertension as the primary or contributing cause.
- The U.S. isn’t the only country facing high blood pressure; globally, 40 percent of adults ages 25 and older had hypertension in 2008.
- Hypertension costs the nation $47.5 billion annually in direct medical expenses. Another $3.5 billion is attributed to lost productivity each year.
- Costs to the nation due to hypertension are estimated at $131 billion in health care services, medications and missed days of work.
- Annual costs directly attributable to hypertension are projected to increase $130.4 billion (in real 2008 dollars) in 2030 compared with 2010, for a total projected annual cost of $200.3 billion by 2030.
- Reducing average population sodium intake from 3,300 mg to 2,300 mg per day may save $18 billion in health care costs and reduce cases of hypertension by 11 million annually.
- As the chart above shows, the disease is more prevalent among African American adults than White and Mexican American adults.
- In relation to Caucasian or
Hispanic American adults, African Americans:
- Tend to become hypertensive earlier in life
- Often have more severe hypertension
- Are more likely to be aware that they have hypertension and get treatment
- Are less likely than Caucasians to achieve target control levels with treatment for hypertension
- Have higher rates than Caucasians of early death from hypertension-related problems, such as coronary heart disease, stroke, and kidney failure
- Among Hispanic American adults, risks for hypertension vary by group. For instance, Puerto Rican American adults have higher rates of hypertension-related death than all other Hispanic groups and Caucasians. However, Cuban Americans have lower rates of hypertension-related death than Caucasians.
- Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders have among the lowest rates of hypertension, at 9.7 percent for men and 8.4 percent for women.
View sources for each statistic here.
Many organizations have developed interactive maps that show the effect of hypertension in communities throughout the United States. Learn about how the disease impacts your county, state, race, or gender, with these tools:
- Interactive Atlas of Heart Disease and Stroke provides information around health indicators (including hypertension hospitalizations, hospital discharge status, and mortality), determinants of health, and health services sorted by state, county, race/ethnicity, gender, age, and year. Data is from a variety of sources detailed here.
- Prevalence of Hypertension in U.S. (see screenshot) includes data by state, county, gender, and race. Data is from the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (United States Hypertension Estimates by County, 2001 and 2009).
- U.S. Health Map details hypertension prevalence, awareness, treatment, control, and self-reporting by state, county, gender, and race. Data is from the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation.