Discrimination, perceived control, and psychological health among African Americans with hypertension

Emily A. Vargas*, Diana A. Chirinos, Ramaswami Mahalingam, Riley A. Marshall, Mandy Wong, Kiarri N. Kershaw

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Hypertensive individuals represent a “vulnerable” population regarding psychological health. While African Americans are disproportionally burdened with hypertension, pathways predicting their psychological health remain understudied. We examine if discrimination is associated with psychological health, through an indirect effect of perceived control within a sample of African American individuals with prevalent hypertension (n = 990). Discrimination was significantly associated with an increase psychological distress and a decrease in psychological well-being through a reduction in perceived control, supporting Minority Stress Theory. Cardiovascular disease risk factor management implications are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournal of Health Psychology
StateAccepted/In press - 2020


  • African Americans
  • discrimination
  • hypertension
  • perceived control
  • psychological health

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Psychology

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