Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science



First Advisor

Phyllis Tyzenhouse


The study was conducted to determine the relationship between social support and the blood pressure of mild and moderate hypertensives. Motivation for the study was derived from the growing realization that the social support of an individual has a far-reaching effect on illness and health and that little research has been done concerning the specific effect that social support has on blood pressure.

The Norbeck Social Support Questionnaire (NSSQ) was administered to a convenience sample of 30 subjects selected from among the hypertensive clients of the Family Practice Clinic and General Medical Clinic located in the Peninsula Health Center. The NSSQ gathered information about the subjects' social networks and allowed the researcher to examine the function of the social network by examining the components of the Net Social Network score. The Net Social Network score is composed of the Number in the Network, Total Function, Frequency, Duration, and Total Loss. The component scores were correlated with the observed systolic and diastolic blood pressures by using Pearson's Product Moment Correlation Coefficient as a measurement of the relationship between social support and the blood pressures of mild and moderate hypertensives.

A significant correlation was found between the observed systolic blood pressure, observed diastolic blood pressure, and the variables contributing to the Net Social Support score. The hypothesis that social support affects the blood pressures of mild and moderate hypertensives was supported by the data from the sample of 30 mild and moderate hypertensives used in the study.


Scanned, with permission from the author, from the original print version, which resides in University Archives.


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