Background: Hyperhomocysteinemia (HHcy) is an independent risk factor for cardiovascular disease. Total serum homocysteine (tHcy) status varies greatly with ethnicity and gender. Here, we studied the tHcy status by investigating concentration of tHcy and calculating prevalence of HHcy according to different age groups and genders.
Methods: This is a cross-sectional study of 10,258 participants (7,248 males and 3,010 females) above 19 years old from Henan Province, northern China. tHcy levels were determined enzymatically. HHcy was defined as a tHcy level higher than 15 μmol/L.
Results: In the whole population, the median value of tHcy was 13.56 (11.50, 16.50) μmol/L, and the HHcy prevalence was 34.61%. Males had much higher tHcy levels than females: 14.51 (12.58, 17.71) μmol/L vs. 11.23 (9.75, 12.97) μmol/L, p < 0.001. Also, males had much higher HHcy prevalence than females (44.33% vs. 11.20%, p < 0.001, OR = 6.33, 95% CI: 5.59 - 7.14). HHcy prevalence and tHcy levels increased greatly for both genders above 60 years old.
Conclusions: Our results demonstrated that prevalence of HHcy is very high in northern China. Implementation of tHcy-lowering strategies is needed.