38. Tate, R.B., Manfreda, J., Krahn A.D., Cuddy, T.E.: Tracking of blood pressure over a 40-year period in the Manitoba Follow-up Study, 1948-1988. Amer J Epi 142(9): 946-954, 1995.

High blood pressure is a well-recognized, modifiable, cardiovascular disease risk factor. Tracking of blood pressure was examined in the University of Manitoba Follow-up Study, a cohort of 3,983 men followed over a 40-year period, between 1948 and 1988. Blood pressure measurements recorded over time in these men, prior to the development of ischemic heart disease, were used in this analysis. Two approaches to tracking were used; correlation analysis and the quantification of the likelihood for a man whose blood pressure was in either the top or bottom quintile to remain in the extreme end of the distribution at later measurement. For ages 25-75 years and for intervals between blood pressure measurement ranging from 5 to 35 years, significant evidence for tracking was found. The strongest evidence for tracking was in middle age, 45-55 years. Strength of tracking decreased with increasing time between measurements. The analysis suggests that men at highest risk for hypertension can be identified at a young age. Hence strategies for prevention of cardiovascular complications can be targeted in early adulthood.

Key words: adult, blood pressure, longitudinal studies, men