African-American diabetics have a significantly higher prevalence of hypertension than Caucasian diabetics, a study suggests.

Wallace R. Johnson, Jr., MD, Assistant Professor of Medicine at the University of Maryland in Baltimore, and colleagues studied 686 diabetics participating in the Baltimore Partnership to Reduce Cardiovascular Disparities study. Ninety-six percent of these subjects were African American and 61% were female.

Of the 686 subjects, 512 (74.6%) had hypertension, a prevalence significantly higher than the 58.6% prevalence found among diabetic Caucasians in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (1999-2002), but similar to the 73.1% prevalence among African Americans in that same survey.

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“Diabetic initiatives targeting African-American communities should strongly consider hypertension education an integral part of any project, since the majority of patients are likely to have concomitant hypertension,” the authors wrote.