EKU Faculty and Staff Scholarship

Cardiovascular Disease Risk Predicts Health Perception in Prison Inmates

Zyad T. Saleh, University of Jordan, Amman, Jordan
Alison Connell, Eastern Kentucky University
Terry A. Lennie, University of Kentucky
Alison L. Bailey, University of Kentucky
Rami A. Elshatarat, Taibah University, Medina, Saudi Arabia
Khalil Yousef, University of Jordan, Amman, Jordan
Debra K. Moser, University of Kentucky


We hypothesized that risk factors for cardiovascular disease (CVD) would be associated with worse health perceptions in prison inmates. This study included 362 inmates recruited from four medium security prisons in Kentucky. Framingham Risk Score was used to estimate the risk of developing CVD within the next 10 years. A single item on self-rated health from the Medical Outcomes Survey–Short Form 36 was used to measure health perception. Multinomial logistic regression showed that for every 1-unit increase in Framingham Risk Score, inmates were 23% more likely to have rated their health as fair/poor and 11% more likely to rate their health as good rather than very good/excellent. These findings demonstrate that worse health perceptions may serve as a starting point for discussing cardiovascular risk factors and prevention with inmates.