Cardiovascular risk factors among college students: Knowledge, perception, and risk assessment

Dieu My T. Tran, Lani M. Zimmerman, Kevin A. Kupzyk, Scott W. Shurmur, Carol H Pullen, Bernice C. Yates

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

8 Scopus citations


Objective: To assess college students' knowledge and perception of cardiovascular risk factors and to screen for their cardiovascular risks. Participants: The final sample that responded to recruitment consisted of 158 college students from a midwestern university. Methods: A cross-sectional, descriptive study was performed using convenience sampling. Results: College students were knowledgeable about cardiovascular risk factors but did not perceive themselves at risk for cardiovascular disease (CVD). Knowledge of cardiovascular risk factors was correlated with the lifetime risk estimates (ρ =.17, p =.048), and perception of cardiovascular risk was positively associated with 30-year CVD risk estimates (ρ =.16, p =.048). More than 50% of the participants had 1 or more cardiovascular risk factors. Conclusions: High knowledge level of cardiovascular risk factors was not sufficient to lower cardiovascular risks within this study population, but changing perception of cardiovascular risk factors may play a bigger role in reducing long-term cardiovascular risks.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)158-167
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of American College Health
Issue number3
StatePublished - Apr 3 2017



  • Cardiovascular risk factors
  • college students
  • knowledge
  • perception
  • risk assessments

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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