Prevalence of hyperhomocysteinemia in an elderly population

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Background: Currently, total hyperhomocysteinemia (tHHcy) is a well-known condition linked to a higher risk of vascular disease. Prevalence of HHcy increases in elderly persons as the risk associated with it persists. Because factors can be potentially reduced in the elderly, it is important to carry out epidemiologic studies of HHcy. Procedure: Previously we described the prevalence of hypertension control in an elder population; now, in an observational cross-sectional simple blind study, total homocysteine (tHcy) concentration was determined in 196 of 400 patients from the original cohort. Results: Mean Hcy concentration was 13.2 μmol/L (95% confidence interval 12.4-14.0; range, 5.0 to 48.9); 15.0 μmol/L for men and 12.3 μmol/L for women. Mean serum folic acid levels were 4.9 ± 3.1 ng/mL (range, 2.0 to 20.0 ng/mL), and vitamin B12 levels were 384.8 ± 314.1 pg/mL (range, 48.0 to 1500.0 pg/mL). Taking into account the reference values established by the Third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey III study, HHcy was detected in 69.8% of all the subjects evaluated. The study showed that 76.2% of the men and 66.4% of the women had high Hcy levels. Conclusions: The very high prevalence of tHHcy in the elderly population, and the consequent risks associated with it suggest that although there are no trials that effectively prove the benefit of tHcy decrease, nutritional intervention is still justified. © 2002 American Journal of Hypertension, Ltd.




Janson, J. J., Galarza, C. R., Murúa, A., Quintana, I., Przygoda, P. A., Waisman, G., … Camera, M. I. (2002). Prevalence of hyperhomocysteinemia in an elderly population. American Journal of Hypertension, 15(5), 394–397.

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