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ISSN: 2167-1095

Journal of Hypertension: Open Access
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Research Article

Silent Crisis: Epidemic Hypertension in Rural West Africa

Emmanuel Ato Williams1*, Daniel Ansong1, Stephen Alder2, Lowell Scott Benson2, Stephen James Campbell2, Katherine MacDonald2, Tadashi R Miya2, Isaac Boakye1, Joseph Marfo Boaheng1, Evans Xorse Amuzu1, Osei Asibey Owusu1, Isaac Nyanor1, Bernard Arhin1 and Ty Triston Dickerson3

1 Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital, Ghana

2 Division of Public Health, University of Utah School of Medicine, USA

3 Department of Inpatient Pediatrics, University of Utah School of Medicine, USA

*Corresponding Author:
Emmanuel Ato Williams
Resident Physician
Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital
Directorate of Internal Medicine
Kumasi, Ghana
Tel: +393421491215
E-mail: [email protected]

Received Date: January 24, 2014; Accepted Date: April 03, 2014; Published Date: April 05, 2014

Citation: Williams EA, Ansong D, Alder S, Benson LS, Campbell SJ, et al. (2014) Silent Crisis: Epidemic Hypertension in Rural West Africa. J Hypertens 3:147. doi:10.4172/2167-1095.1000147

Copyright: © 2014 Williams EA, et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permitsunrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

Abstract

Background: Hypertension is the commonest modifiable risk factor of cardiovascular diseases and a major preventable cause of premature mortality. The worldwide prevalence of hypertension will increase by more than half by 2025; almost three-quarters of people with hypertension will be living in developing countries by 2025. We set out to evaluate the burden and correlates of adult hypertension in a rural Ghanaian community.

Methods: A cross-sectional survey was conducted on 438 adults aged ≥35 in the Barekese sub-district (estimated population 18,510). Socio-demographic characteristics, modifiable and non-modifiable risk factors, blood pressure (BP) and anthropometric measurements were collected using standardized protocols.

Results: The proportion of hypertension and isolated systolic hypertension in the study population is 50.9% and 16.0% respectively. Only 21.2% were previously diagnosed as hypertensive; 25.8% of whom were not being treated. The proportion of the people with hypertension whose BPs were controlled (<140/90mmHg) was 13.5%. The mean systolic and diastolic BPs were 134.75 mmHg (SD: 24.68) and 83.01 mmHg (SD: 13.58). Obesity (Body Mass Index, BMI>30 kg/m2) was found in 13.24% of the population, with 6.7% being extremely obese (BMI>40 kg/m2). Factors such as increasing age and BMI positively correlated with BP.

Conclusion: There appears to be a high burden of hypertension in rural Ghana; the low detection, and poor management and control should make this a high priority. These findings indicate the need for urgent measures to promote health education that would facilitate prevention, early detection, and management of hypertension.

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