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Wolf-Maier and colleaguesArticle analyzed data
from 8 national surveys in Europe and North America to assess geographic variation
in blood pressure (BP) levels and in the prevalence of hypertension. Mean
BP measurements and hypertension prevalence were higher in 6 European countries
than in the United States and Canada. Hypertension prevalence was strongly
correlated with stroke mortality. In an editorial, Staessen and coauthorsArticle note that BP is the most consistent and powerful
predictor of stroke risk and suggest that a downward shift in the distribution
of BP in large populations would likely lead to a marked reduction in the
global burden of stroke.
This Week in JAMA . JAMA. 2003;289(18):2325. doi:10.1001/jama.289.18.2325
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