Prevalence of cardiovascular risk factors in South Korean adults: Results from the Korea Medical Insurance Corporation (KMIC) study

Sun Ha Jee, Lawrence J. Appel, Il Suh, Paul K. Whelton, Il Soon Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

PURPOSE: To estimate the prevalence of cardiovascular risk factors in South Korea. METHODS: Data were obtained from the Korea Medical Insurance Corporation (KMIC) which provides insurance to civil servants and private school workers. The study sample included female workers, ages 35 to 59 (n = 67,861), and a systematic random sample of insured male workers, ages 35 to 59 (n = 115,200), who attended insurance examinations in 1990 and 1992. Prevalence estimates were age-adjusted to reflect the Korean population, ages 35 to 59, in 1990. RESULTS: The prevalence of hypertension (systolic blood pressure ≤ 140 mmHg and/or diastolic blood pressure ≤ 90 mmHg) was 28.9% in men and 15.9% in women. The prevalence of hypercholesterolemia (total cholesterol ≤ 240 mg/dl) was 8.9% and 10.4% in men and women, respectively. Smoking was highly prevalent in men (57.4%) and uncommon in women (0.6%). The prevalence of a fasting blood sugar ≤ 126 mg/dl was 4.7% in men and 1.3% in women. Among men, 74.4% had one or more of the cardiovascular risk factors under study. Among women, 29.0% had one or more of the risk factors. With advancing age, the prevalence of risk factors became more numerous, for both men and women. CONCLUSION: In order to avert the ongoing epidemic of cerebrovascular disease and the emerging problem of ischemic heart disease, prevention and treatment of modifiable risk factors must become an important health priority in South Korea.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)14-21
Number of pages8
JournalAnnals of epidemiology
Volume8
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 1998

Keywords

  • Cardiovascular Disease
  • Prevalence
  • Risk Factor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology

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