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AARP Segunda Juventud Hispanic Heart Health Study

A majority of Hispanics ages 40 and older (68%) say that they think they know the warning signs of heart disease, according to this AARP survey of Hispanics ages 40 and older conducted in October 2007 and September 2008. The survey found that:

  • The most frequently mentioned warning signs of a heart condition are chest pain or discomfort (55%); pain in other areas such as arms, upper abdomen, back, neck, jaw, or stomach (31%); and shortness of breath (27%).
  • Most of the respondents with a heart condition were actively taking steps to manage it. The majority are trying to prevent or control high blood pressure, lower their cholesterol, trying to lose weight or trying to prevent or control diabetes.
  • A majority of the respondents with a diagnosed heart condition in 2008 say that they are able to get the treatment they need for their heart condition through their health insurance, or say they are getting the treatment they need. However, a few say that their insurance company has denied them treatment for their condition.
  • Respondents without a heart condition are willing to do a variety of things to help prevent a heart condition from developing in the future. Nearly all are willing to eat a heart-healthy diet (94%), lower cholesterol (93%), prevent or control high blood pressure (92%), exercise regularly (91%), prevent or control diabetes (90%), ease stress (89%), or lose weight (88%).
  • Over two-thirds of those without a heart condition say that they would see a general practice doctor or other medical professional for information on prevention or management of a heart condition (70%). About two in five would seek this information at a hospital (41%), while one-quarter would use the Internet (24%).

The study was conducted in two waves for AARP via telephone by ICR. The original survey was fielded during the period October 9-23, 2007, among a representative sample of 484 Hispanic respondents 40 years of age or older. The follow-up survey was conducted September 9-22, 2008, among a representative sample of 555 Hispanics ages 40 and older. For more information, contact Tracy Needham of AARP Knowledge Management at 202-434-6322. (15 pages)

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