Hypertension/ High Blood Pressure Has Doubled Worldwide Over 30 Years

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‘The capacity of low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) to detect and treat hypertension must be improved.’


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“Despite medical and pharmacological advances over decades, global progress in hypertension management has been slow, and the vast majority of people with hypertension remain untreated, with large disadvantages in low- and middle-income countries”, says Professor Majid Ezzati, Imperial College London, UK, the senior author of the study.

The Non-Communicable Disease Risk Factor Collaboration (NCD-RisC) analyzed data from 1,201 population-representative studies, involving 104 million people from 184 countries (covering 99% of the world’s population).

Hypertension is defined as having systolic blood pressure of 140 mm Hg or greater, diastolic blood pressure of 90 mm Hg or greater.

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Modelling was used to estimate the prevalence of hypertension and the proportion of people with hypertension who had a previous diagnosis, who were taking medication for hypertension, and whose hypertension was controlled to below 140/90 mm Hg, by country, year, and age.

Results showed that prevalence of hypertension in adults has remained largely unchanged over the past 30 years and even rates have dropped sharply in high-income countries. Whereas, more than half of the population had hypertension in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs).

Treatment and control have improved in most countries since 1990, particularly in high-income countries where treatment levels were greater than 70%; and control rates were higher than 50% in 2019, and in several upper-middle and middle-income countries, more than 65% of adults with hypertension were treated and nearly half had their condition controlled in 2019.

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However, there has been little change in LMICs, where less than a quarter of women and less than a fifth of men with hypertension were being treated in 2019, and fewer than 10% had well controlled blood pressure.

The standstill in global prevalence and the global control rates of approximately 20% should serve as an important global wakeup call that cardiovascular disease is going to be a main burden of illness for many years to come, especially if we carry on like this.

Source: Medindia

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