Neighborhood Noise as a Modifiable Risk Factor for Incident Hypertension: Evidence from Two Cohort Studies

Project: Research


  • Sara Dubowsky Adar (PI)


Neighborhood noise from sources including transportation traffic has been associated with sleep disturbance, depressed emotional well-being, elevated blood pressure, and cardiovascular disease. While over half of Americans living in urban areas experience noise levels above recommended for health, a lack of long-term noise estimates in community settings has left this pervasive and modifiable exposure largely unstudied in the United States. For this proposed project, we plan to leverage a state-of-the-art and well-validated prediction model for neighborhood noise in Chicago to examine associations with blood pressure and incident hypertension within the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis and the Chicago Healthy Aging Project. These two population-based cohort studies have followed nearly 10,000 older American adults over a 10-year time period and collected high-quality blood pressure measurements and data on incident hypertension. Using unique long-term noise estimates for each participant as well as self-reported noise exposures, we will examine if long-term exposures to neighborhood noise are associated with: 1) incident hypertension and/or 2) a more rapid increase in blood pressure over time after control for traditional risk factors. We will furthermore explore if certain individual characteristics (e.g., age, race/ethnicity, socioeconomic status) and neighborhood factors (e.g., socioeconomic status, physical barriers from roads) are associated with enhanced or reduced risk from noise exposures. As a highly prevalent, modifiable, and understudied exposure that varies within and between neighborhoods, the results of this project could help to inform urban design and public policy aimed at minimizing the burden of hypertension and cardiovascular disease in our society.
Award amount$148,434.00
Award date07/01/2016
Program typeGrant-in-Aid
Award ID16GRNT30960046
Effective start/end date07/01/201606/30/2018