Submitted to: Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology Conference
Publication Type: Abstract only
Publication Acceptance Date: 11/5/2001
Publication Date: 4/20/2002
Citation: Interpretive Summary:
Technical Abstract: The rural Mississippi Delta has a large minority, impoverished population at high risk for health problems. Because it is underrepresented in national surveys, a telephone survey of a sample of the Delta of AR, LA, and MS was conducted to describe their health status. Using a two stage stratified cluster-sampling plan of the 36 targeted counties, a sample of 3,455 households were available and 2,162 participated, including 1,751 adults and 485 children. Adults self-reported weight, height, presence of chronic conditions; and the SF12 rated physical and mental health. Results were compared to national 1994-1996, 1998 CSFII. High cholesterol (17.6 vs 14.0%), diabetes (10.8 vs 5.6%), and hypertension (33.2 vs 20%) were significantly higher than the national sample. Obesity (27.9 vs 16.2%) was strikingly higher in all children's age groups and twice as prevalent in adults (33.9 vs 17.3%). Adults in the Delta scored lower on the physical scale but higher on the mental scale compared to the national SF12 sample. Given the high prevalence of self-reported health problems in the lower Mississippi Delta, a public health crisis appears to exist in this region.