The effect of body mass index on blood pressure varies by race among children referred for treatment of obesity

WASHINGTON, DC – Obesity in black children more severely impacts blood pressure than in white children who are equally overweight, according to a new study presented at the American Heart Association’s High Blood Pressure Research 2012 Scientific Sessions.
Researchers examined the effect of age and body weight on blood pressure in children at an obesity clinic. While age and body weight were similar among black and white patients, black children had significantly higher blood pressure compared to their white counterparts.
On average, the black children’s blood pressure was 8 percent higher than white children. This suggests that obesity affects blood pressure more in black children. The researchers said further research is needed to better understand this race-specific effect, as it could lead to better care and more targeted prevention strategies against high blood pressure in black children.
The study was funded by the National Institutes of Health and the Indiana University Purdue University Signature Center Initiative.
Note: Scientific presentation is at 1:45 p.m., Friday, September 21, 2012.
Author disclosures are on the abstracts.
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