PURPOSE: We hypothesized that the sleep complaints of insomnia predict hypertension, particularly in African Americans. The purpose of this study was to analyze insomnia complaints as predictors of hypertension in the Cardiovascular Health Study (CHS), stratifying by gender and allowing for race and sleep variable interaction.
METHODS: Design: This is a prospective secondary analysis of an existing dataset. Setting: This is a community-based study over a 6 year period of follow-up. Participants: The study analyzed data from 1419 older individuals (mean age 73.4 + 4.4 years) from the Cardiovascular Health Study who were not hypertensive at baseline. Interventions: noneMeasurements: We constructed Relative Risks (RR) of incident hypertension for insomnia complaints singly and in combination.
RESULTS: Difficulty falling asleep, singly or in combination with other sleep complaints, predicted a statistically significantly reduced risk of incident hypertension for non-African American men in 6 years of follow-up. Insomnia complaints did not predict hypertension in women or in African Americans, although there may not have been enough power to show a significant association for African Americans.
CONCLUSION: Insomnia does not predict hypertension. Difficulty falling asleep is associated with reduced risk of hypertension in non African American men.
CLINICAL IMPLICATIONS: It is difficult to demonstrate that insomnia is causally associated with hypertension. Indeed, difficulty falling asleep predicts reduced risk of hypertension in non African American men.
DISCLOSURE: Barbara Phillips, No Financial Disclosure Information; No Product/Research Disclosure Information