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Open Access Research article

High prevalence of coexisting prehypertension and prediabetes among healthy adults in northern and northeastern China

Jie Wu1, Wen-hua Yan2, Ling Qiu1*, Xin-qi Chen1, Xiu-zhi Guo1, Wei Wu1, Liang-yu Xia1, Xu-zhen Qin1, Yan-hong Liu3, Hai-tao Ding4, Shao-mei Han5, Cheng-li Xu5 and Guang-jin Zhu5

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Clinical Laboratory, Peking Union Medical College Hospital, Peking Union Medical College & Chinese Academy of Medical Science, Beijing 100730, China

2 Department of Endocrinology, Chinese PLA General Hospital, Beijing 100853, China

3 Department of Clinical Laboratory, The 2nd Affiliated Hospital of Harbin Medical University, Harbin 150001, China

4 Department of Clinical Laboratory, Inner Mongolian People's Hospital, Hohhot, 010017, China

5 Institute of Basic Medical Sciences, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences & Peking Union Medical College, Beijing 100005, China

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BMC Public Health 2011, 11:794  doi:10.1186/1471-2458-11-794

Published: 12 October 2011



Prehypertension and prediabetes are major risk factors of cardiovascular disease, and their combined presence may result in more serious cardiovascular outcomes than expected with either prehypertension or prediabetes alone. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the prevalence of coexisting prehypertension and prediabetes, and the associated risk profiles in a Chinese population.


A cross-sectional survey in a representative sample of 3,595 men and 4,593 women aged 18 years and older was performed between 2008 and 2010. Prehypertension and prediabetes were diagnosed using the guidelines from the Seventh Report of the Joint National Committee on prevention, detection, and treatment of high blood pressure and American Diabetes Association, respectively. Prehypertension was defined as a systolic blood pressure of 120-139 mmHg and/or diastolic blood pressure of 80-89 mmHg, and prediabetes was defined as a fasting blood glucose of 5.6-6.9 mmol/L.


The prevalence of coexisting prehypertension and prediabetes was 11.0%. Men had a higher prevalence of coexisting prehypertension and prediabetes than women (14.2% vs. 8.4%; P < 0.0001). This prevalence increased with age and body mass index, and was the lowest among Mongolian-Chinese (5.1%). A multivariate analysis showed that γ-glutamyltransferase and uric acid were significantly and positively correlated with body mass index, waist circumference, blood pressure, triglycerides, and total cholesterol, and negatively correlated with high density lipoprotein cholesterol in subjects with prehypertension and prediabetes.


There is a large proportion of Chinese adults with coexisting prehypertension and prediabetes. Thus, there is a need for more efforts that implement public health programs that target the earlier stages of hypertension and diabetes.