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Had hypertension, past 12 months

Codes and Frequencies

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HYPERTENYR indicates whether persons had hypertension or high blood pressure during the past 12 months. In 1977, this information was collected for all persons age 20 and older; in 2002 and 2007, it was collected only from sample adults age 18+ who were ever diagnosed by a doctor or other health professional as having hypertension (HYPERTENEV); in 2012 sample children ages 6-17 were also included. Please see the Comparability and Universe tabs for changes in the universe between samples.

The notes in the Codebook for 1977 state that these data "were collected for classification purposes only and not to ascertain prevalence estimates."

In 2002 and 2007, respondents who received the question associated with HYPERTENYR were also asked about whether they were ever told on two or more different visits that they had hypertension (HYP2TIME).


Along with universe differences, other procedural changes limit the comparability of this variable between samples.

There were slight differences in the question wording between the two time periods.


In 1977, interviewers asked, "During the past 12 months, did [you/person] have high blood pressure or hypertension?" In 2002 and 2007, interviewers asked, "During the past 12 months, have you had hypertension, also called high blood pressure?" The substantive meaning of the two questions was the same, however.

A more significant difference is the presence of proxy reporting in 1977 but not in 2002 and 2007.


In the earlier year, a respondent representing the family could answer this question for other adult family members. In 2002 and 2007, except in rare cases where disability precluded self-reporting, sample adults themselves answered the question. Because self-reporting is likely to be more accurate than proxy reporting, particularly for non-disabling health problems, researchers should exercise caution when comparing results between 1977 and 2002/2007.

In 2012, sample children ages 6-17 were included in the universe.

In 2013, sample adults were asked this question only if they had been told on two or more DIFFERENT visits that they had hypertension.


  • 1977: Persons age 20+.
  • 2002; 2007: Sample adults age 18+ who were ever told they had high blood pressure.
  • 2012: Sample children age 6+ and sample adults age 18+ who were ever told they have high blood pressure/hypertension
  • 2013-2018: Sample adults 18+ who were ever told they had hypertension and were told they had hypertension on 2+ visits


  • 1977, 2002, 2007, 2012-2018