Korean Americans with high blood pressure who are confident they can achieve blood pressure control are more likely to do so

Research Activities, April 2011, No. 368

Among Korean-Americans with high blood pressure (hypertension), three factors—the individual's age, how long they have had hypertension, and how strongly they believe in their ability to achieve blood pressure control—affect hypertension self-care behaviors, a new study finds. The likelihood of using self-care behaviors (taking medication, exercising, eating properly, and controlling one's weight) was influenced most by the individual's belief in their ability to control their blood pressure through self-care (hypertension control self-efficacy). In contrast, social support had little influence on hypertension self-care behaviors.

The association of older age and longer duration of hypertension with better self-care behavior might result from more learning opportunities among those living with the disease longer, note the researchers. Their statistical model, which included predictors of hypertension self-care based on a series of questionnaires and interviews with 445 Korean Americans with high blood pressure, accounted for 18 percent of the variance in self-care scores.

Study participants had systolic blood pressure of 140 mm Hg or higher, diastolic pressure of at least 90 mm Hg, or were on medicine to treat hypertension. Normal blood pressure for healthy adults ranges from 90/60 mm Hg to 120/80 mm Hg. The study was funded in part by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (HS13160).

More details are in "Correlates of self-care behaviors for managing hypertension among Korean-Americans: A questionnaire survey," by Jong-Eun Lee, Ph.D., R.N., Hae-Ra Han, Ph.D., R.N., Heejung Song, Ph.D., and others in the International Journal of Nursing Studies 47(4), pp. 411-417, 2010.

Current as of April 2011
Internet Citation: Korean Americans with high blood pressure who are confident they can achieve blood pressure control are more likely to do so: Research Activities, April 2011, No. 368. April 2011. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD. http://www.ahrq.gov/news/newsletters/research-activities/apr11/0411RA5.html