Hypertension Prevalence, Treatment, and Related Behaviors Among Asian Americans: An Examination by Method of Measurement and Disaggregated Subgroups

  • Mary Y. Jung
  • Sunmin Lee
  • Stephen B. Thomas
  • Hee-Soon Juon



Data on hypertension among Asian Americans is lacking and often aggregated, which can mask important ethnic differences. This study aims to provide a comprehensive view of hypertension and hypertension-related behaviors, including hypertension treatment, management, and information seeking, among Chinese, Korean, and Vietnamese Americans.


Data were collected from 600 foreign-born Asian Americans (201 Chinese, 198 Korean, and 201 Vietnamese participants) in the Washington–Baltimore metropolitan area, aged 18 years and over, from 2013 to 2014. Hypertension was assessed using direct measurement and self-report of having ever been told by a physician. Hypertension prevalence was compared based on the method of assessment, ethnicity, and sex.


The age-adjusted hypertension prevalence from direct measurement was 27.5%, which is higher than the 2011–2014 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey estimate for Asians (24.9%). Hypertension prevalences from self-report among Chinese, Korean, and Vietnamese were 13.4%, 23.2%, and 22.9%, respectively, which are lower than 2014 California Health Interview Survey estimates (15.6%, 18.4%, and 25.8%) with the exception of Korean participants. In regard to hypertension-related behaviors, 67.8% of hypertensive adults received management, 64.3% took antihypertensive medication, and 67.0% sought information to improve their hypertension.


Disaggregated data on hypertension based on measured blood pressure may prevent underestimation from self-report, particularly among those with limited healthcare access. More accurate and objective assessment of hypertension is needed for improved monitoring of hypertension among Asian-American subgroups.


Asian Americans Hypertension Prevalence Disease management Information-seeking behavior 

MSC codes

62P25 (Statistics—applications to social sciences) 97F80 (Ratio and proportion, percentages) 



This study was supported by the National Cancer Institute (R01CA163805)..


This study was supported by the National Cancer Institute (R01CA163805).

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflicts of Interest

The authors have no conflicts of interest to declare.

Ethical Approval

All procedures performed involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

Informed Consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants in the study.


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Copyright information

© W. Montague Cobb-NMA Health Institute 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Epidemiology and BiostatisticsUniversity of Maryland School of Public HealthCollege ParkUSA
  2. 2.Department of Medical Oncology, Division of Population ScienceThomas Jefferson UniversityPhiladelphiaUSA

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