Recent study shows Hispanics have higher rate of heart disease

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MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- A recent study by the American Heart Association focuses on Hispanic adults who have survived a stroke and their risk of also suffering a heart attack. 

As part of CBS 58's coverage of Hispanic Heritage Month, CBS 58's Jocelyne Pruna got a closer look at the troubling statistics, and the barriers to receiving quality health care. 

According to the American Heart Association, from 2015 to 2018, 52.3% of Hispanic men and 42.7% of Hispanic women aged 20 years and older had cardiovascular disease (CVD).

The rate of cardiovascular risk factors among Hispanic/Latino people living in the U.S. is very high, and while they are often aware of their health conditions, less than half of the Hispanic/Latino adults with history of stroke or transient ischemic attack (TIA) had healthy blood pressure and cholesterol, and about half had healthy blood sugar levels, according to new research published today in Stroke, a journal of the American Stroke Association, a division of the American Heart Association.

Researchers found:

  • Overall, 59% of participants had high blood pressure, 65% had high cholesterol and more than one-third had diabetes (Type 1 or Type 2).
  • Even though up to 90% of study participants knew they had these CVD risk factors, most did not have healthy levels: almost half had normal blood pressure levels; one-third had healthy cholesterol levels; and about half had their blood sugar in a healthy range.
  • About half of participants were taking anti-clotting medications; less than half were taking cholesterol-lowering statin medications; and one-quarter were taking both medications, the mainstay of stroke prevention.
  • Older age was associated with uncontrolled high blood pressure and diabetes.
  • Adults born in the U.S. or who have lived in the U.S. more than 10 years were more likely to have poorly controlled diabetes.
  • Women were more likely to have unhealthy cholesterol levels; and
  • Not having health insurance was associated with decreased statin use and unhealthy cholesterol levels.
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