Resistant hypertension and cardiovascular disease mortality in the US: Results from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES)

Katerina R. Kaczmarski, Stephen M. Sozio, Jingsha Chen, Yingying Sang, Tariq Shafi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Background: Apparent treatment-resistant hypertension (aTRH) is a common condition associated with risk of cardiovascular events. However, the risk of cardiovascular mortality associated with aTRH in the US population is unknown. We aimed to assess the risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD) mortality associated with aTRH in the US population. Methods: We analyzed data from 6357 adult hypertensive participants of the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (1988-1994 and 1999-2010) linked to the National Death Index. Based on presence of uncontrolled hypertension [blood pressure (BP) ≥140/90 mmHg] and the number of antihypertensives prescribed, we classified participants into the following groups: non-aTRH (BP < 140/90 mmHg and ≤ 3 antihypertensives); controlled aTRH (BP < 140/90 mmHg and ≥ 4 antihypertensives); and uncontrolled aTRH (BP ≥140/90 mmHg and ≥ 3 antihypertensives). Results: Of the 6357 participants, 1522 had aTRH, representing a US prevalence of 7.6 million. Of the participants with aTRH, 432 had controlled aTRH and 1090 had uncontrolled aTRH. During follow-up (median 6 years), there were 550 CVD deaths. The cumulative incidence of CVD mortality was significantly higher in the aTRH group compared with non-aTRH group (log-rank p < 0.001). In fully adjusted models, aTRH was associated with a 47% higher risk of CVD mortality compared with the non-aTRH group [1.47 (1.1-1.96)]. Similar increase in risk of CVD mortality was noted across aTRH subgroups compared with the non-aTRH group: controlled aTRH [1.66 (1.03-2.68)] and uncontrolled aTRH [1.43 (1.05-1.94)]. Among non-aTRH subgroups, those on 3 antihypertensive medications had a 35% increased risk of CVD mortality than those on < 3 medications [1.35 (0.98-1.86)]. Conclusions: aTRH is a common condition, affecting approximately 7.6 million Americans. Regardless of BP control, people with aTRH remain at a higher risk of cardiovascular outcomes. The risk of cardiovascular disease mortality remains high among those with controlled BP on 3 medications (non-aTRH) or ≥ 4 medications (controlled aTRH), groups not generally considered at high risk. Future risk reduction interventions should consider focusing on these high-risk groups.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number138
JournalBMC nephrology
Volume20
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 25 2019

Keywords

  • All-cause mortality
  • Anti-hypertensives
  • Cardiovascular mortality
  • Hypertension

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nephrology

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