Prevalence of hypertension in Mexico City and San Antonio, Texas

Steven Haffner, Clicerio González Villalpando, Helen P. Hazuda, Rodolfo Valdez, Leena Mykkänen, Michael Stern

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

43 Scopus citations


Background: Few data are available on the prevalence of hypertension in Mexico. Methods and Results: We compared the prevalence of mild hypertension (systolic blood pressure ≥140 mm Hg and/or diastolic blood pressure ≥90 mm Hg and/or use of antihypertensive medications) in 1500 low-income Mexican Americans who participated in the San Antonio Heart Study and 2280 low- income Mexicans who participated in the Mexico City Diabetes Study. The crude prevalence of mild hypertension was 17.1% in Mexican men versus 24.4% in Mexican American men (P=.001) and 17.4% in Mexican women versus 22.0% in Mexican American women (P=.005). After adjustment for age, body mass index (BMI), waist-to-hip ratio (WHR), non-insulin dependent diabetes mellitus (NIDDM), educational attainment, and percent native American genetic admixture (Caucasian and native American), the odds ratio (Mexico City/San Antonio) was 0.55 (95% CI, 0.39, 0.77; P<.001) in men and 0.81 (CI, 0.54, 1.12; P=.201) in women. In a pooled model including both men and women, the odds ratio was 0.67 (95% CI, 0.53, 0.84; P<.001). In the pooled model, city, age, female sex, NIDDM, BMI, WHR, and low educational attainment were significantly related to the prevalence of hypertension. Conclusions: The causes for these differences in hypertension prevalence are not known but may reflect a less modernized lifestyle in Mexico City, including greater physical activity, less obesity, and the consumption of a high-carbohydrate, low-fat diet.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1542-1549
Number of pages8
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 1994


  • Mexican Americans
  • Mexico
  • diabetes mellitus
  • hypertension
  • obesity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Physiology (medical)


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