(HealthDay News) — Stage 1 hypertension is associated with an increased risk for acute coronary syndromes (ACS) in women, according to a study published online in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology.
Ester Kringeland, MD, from the University of Bergen in Norway, and colleagues examined associations between stage 1 hypertension and ACS in 12,329 participants in the Hordaland Health Study (mean baseline age, 41 years; 52% women). Participants were categorized by baseline blood pressure (BP) category: normotension (BP <130/80 mm Hg), stage 1 hypertension (BP 130 to 139/80 to 89 mm Hg), and stage 2 hypertension (BP ≥140/90 mm Hg).
The researchers found that during 16 years of follow-up, 1.4 and 5.7% of women and men, respectively, experienced incident ACS. Stage 1 hypertension was associated with a higher risk for ACS in women after adjustment for diabetes, smoking, body mass index, cholesterol, and physical activity (hazard ratio, 2.18; 95% confidence interval, 1.32 to 3.60), while in men, the association was not significant (hazard ratio, 1.30; 95% confidence interval, 0.98 to 1.71). Stage 1 diastolic hypertension was associated with ACS in women (hazard ratio, 2.54; 95% confidence interval, 1.56 to 4.15) but not in men (hazard ratio, 1.29; 95% confidence interval, 1.00 to 1.65), while stage 1 systolic hypertension was not associated with ACS in either sex after additional adjustment for systolic and diastolic BP.
“The results add to emerging evidence indicating that high blood pressure has particularly unfavorable effects on women’s hearts,” Kringeland said in a statement.