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Research Article

Independent effects of weight change and attained body weight on prevalence of arterial hypertension in obese and non-obese men.

BMJ 1989; 299 doi: (Published 23 September 1989) Cite this as: BMJ 1989;299:767
  1. S. Sonne-Holm,
  2. T. I. Sørensen,
  3. G. Jensen,
  4. P. Schnohr
  1. Obesity Research Group, Hvidovre University Hospital, Copenhagen.


    OBJECTIVE--To assess the relations among prevalence of arterial hypertension, history of weight change, and current body weight in the range from normal weight to severe obesity. DESIGN--Retrospective analysis of medical records of men registered with Danish military authorities from 1943 to 1977 and followed up four to 40 years later. SETTING--Draft board of Copenhagen and surrounding counties and the rest of Sjaelland and surrounding islands. SUBJECTS--964 Men who were severely obese (body mass index greater than or equal to kg/m2 at the first examination) and 1134 random controls. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES--Blood pressure and weight. RESULTS--Hypertension was more prevalent in subjects with an unchanged body mass index as that index increased over the range studied. At any body mass index hypertension was more prevalent in subjects who had increased to this index and less common in those who had decreased to it than in those who had stayed the same weight since the first examination. Hypertension among controls was most common in those subjects who had become obese during adulthood. CONCLUSIONS--Changes in body weight have a great influence on arterial hypertension independent of the effect of attained weight, particularly in obese subjects.