A Senior Center–Based Pilot Trial of the Effect of Lifestyle Intervention on Blood Pressure in Minority Elderly People with Hypertension

Authors

  • Senaida Fernandez PhD,

    1. From the *Division of General Internal Medicine, Department of Medicine, New York University School of Medicine, New York, New YorkState University of New York Upstate Medical University, Syracuse, New YorkDepartment of Medicine, Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, New York, New York.
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  • Kasandra L. Scales MPH,

    1. From the *Division of General Internal Medicine, Department of Medicine, New York University School of Medicine, New York, New YorkState University of New York Upstate Medical University, Syracuse, New YorkDepartment of Medicine, Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, New York, New York.
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  • Johanna M. Pineiro BA,

    1. From the *Division of General Internal Medicine, Department of Medicine, New York University School of Medicine, New York, New YorkState University of New York Upstate Medical University, Syracuse, New YorkDepartment of Medicine, Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, New York, New York.
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  • Antoinette M. Schoenthaler EdD,

    1. From the *Division of General Internal Medicine, Department of Medicine, New York University School of Medicine, New York, New YorkState University of New York Upstate Medical University, Syracuse, New YorkDepartment of Medicine, Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, New York, New York.
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  • Gbenga Ogedegbe MD, MPH, MS

    1. From the *Division of General Internal Medicine, Department of Medicine, New York University School of Medicine, New York, New YorkState University of New York Upstate Medical University, Syracuse, New YorkDepartment of Medicine, Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, New York, New York.
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  • A portion of these data were presented at the 60th Annual Scientific Meeting of the Gerontological Society of America, November 16–20, 2007, San Francisco, California.

Address correspondence to Senaida Fernandez, PhD, New York University, 423 E. 23rd St., 15N-167, New York, NY 10010. E-mail: senaida.fernandez@nyumc.org

Abstract

OBJECTIVES: To test the feasibility, acceptability, and effect of a senior center–based behavioral counseling lifestyle intervention on systolic blood pressure (BP).

DESIGN: A pre-post design pilot trial of behavioral counseling for therapeutic lifestyle changes in minority elderly people with hypertension. Participants completed baseline visit, Visit 1 (approximately 6 weeks postbaseline), and a final study Visit 2 (approximately 14 weeks postbaseline) within 4 months.

SETTING: The study took place in six community-based senior centers in New York City with 65 seniors (mean age 72.29±6.92; 53.8% female; 84.6% African American).

PARTICIPANTS: Sixty-five minority elderly people.

INTERVENTION: Six weekly and two monthly “booster” group sessions on lifestyle changes to improve BP (e.g., diet, exercise, adherence to prescribed antihypertensive medications).

MEASUREMENTS: Primary outcome was systolic BP (SBP) measured using an automated BP monitor. Secondary outcomes were diastolic BP (DBP), physical activity, diet, and adherence to prescribed antihypertensive medications.

RESULTS: There was a significant reduction in average SBP of 13.0±21.1 mmHg for the intervention group (t(25)=3.14, P=.004) and a nonsignificant reduction in mean SBP of 10.6±30.0 mmHg for the waitlist control group (t(29)=1.95, P=.06). For the intervention group, adherence improved 26% (t(23)=2.31, P=.03), and vegetable intake improved 23% (t(25)=2.29, P=.03).

CONCLUSION: This senior center–based lifestyle intervention was associated with a significant reduction in SBP and adherence to prescribed antihypertensive medications and diet in the intervention group. Participant retention and group attendance rates suggest that implementing a group-counseling intervention in senior centers is feasible.

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