Racial Variation, Psychosocial Risk Factors, and Undiagnosed and Poorly Managed Hypertension

Latrica E. Best, University of Southern California

An increasing amount of scientific research focuses on the impact of psychosocial risk factors on a wide range of health outcomes. Using the 2006 wave of the Health and Retirement Study, I analyze both survey and biological data in order to examine race differences in both undiagnosed and uncontrolled hypertension. I also evaluate the impact of a comprehensive set of psychosocial risk factors (hostility, anger out, anxiety, chronic stress, and perceived daily discrimination) on the relationship between race/ethnicity and hypertension in this nationally representative survey of Whites, African Americans, and Hispanics. Results point to significant gains in diagnosing hypertension, particularly among African Americans. African Americans were less likely to be undiagnosed, even after controlling for a host of demographic and psychosocial factors.

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Presented in Poster Session 1