2015-07-24Zeitschriftenartikel DOI: 10.1186/s12889-015-1929-5
Modifiable cardiovascular risk factors in adults aged 40–79 years in Germany with and without prior coronary heart disease or stroke
Busch, Markus A.
Background: Control of modifiable cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk factors has substantially reduced CVD mortality, but risk factor levels in populations may change and need continuous monitoring. This study aims to provide current estimates of the prevalence of these risk factors in Germany according to sex and history of coronary heart disease (CHD) or stroke. Methods: The analyses were based on data from the German Health Interview and Examination Survey for Adults (DEGS1; age 40–79 years, n = 5101), which is a cross-sectional population-based examination survey. CVD risk factors were defined according to recommendations in the European Guidelines on Cardiovascular Disease Prevention in Clinical Practice 2012. Results: The mean age was 57 years and 52 % were female; 493 participants had prior CHD and 163 participants a prior stroke. The overall prevalence of behavioural risk factors ranged from 17.9 % for high risk alcohol consumption to 90 % for low vegetable intake. Blood pressure ≥ 140/90 mmHg was found in 21 % and 69 % had total cholesterol ≥ 5.0 mmol/l. Only 16 % met the targets for five behavioural factors combined (smoking, physical activity, fruit intake, alcohol intake and obesity), 13 % of those with and 16 % of those without CHD or stroke. The prevalences of most behavioural risk factors were higher among men compared to women. Conclusions: There is a high prevention potential from modifiable cardiovascular risk factors in the general population aged 40–79 years in Germany and among those with prior CHD or stroke. Risk factors are often co-occurring, are interrelated and require combined educational, behavioral, medical and policy approaches.