Prevalence, awareness, treatment, and control of hypertension among rural and urban dwellers of the Far North Region of Cameroon

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Abstract

Objective:

To assess the prevalence and determinants of high blood pressure (BP) and awareness, treatment, and control rates in the Far North Region of Cameroon, where these variables have not been explored so far.

Methods:

In total, 889 individuals (41.5% women) aged at least 18 years participated in a cross-sectional survey conducted in Maroua (urban area) and Tokombere (rural area) from November 2014 to May 2015, using a multistage cluster sampling frame. Anthropometric variables, BP, and fasting capillary glucose were assessed in all participants. Hypertension was defined as BP at least 140/90 mmHg or antihypertensive therapy and BP control as BP less than 140/90 mmHg. Prevalence estimates were age standardized to the Cameroon population.

Results:

The prevalence of hypertension was 37.8% (rural: 34%; urban: 41.2%; men: 38.8%; women: 37.9%). Hypertension was associated with urban environment (odds ratio: 1.42; 95%; confidence interval 1.06–1.89), age at least 70 years (4.06; 2.02–6.14), male sex (4.06; 2.02–6.14), abdominal obesity (2.36; 1.54–3.61), and high blood sugar (2.01; 1.31–3.08). Among individuals with hypertension, 18.6% (rural: 17.9%; urban: 19.5%) were aware of having high BP. Among those aware, 29.3% (rural: 17.3%; urban: 36.3%) reported receiving treatment, of whom 16.3% (rural: 22.6%; urban: 4.2%) had BP controlled. Awareness, treatment, and BP control levels were higher in women than men.

Conclusion:

Hypertension is highly prevalent in Far North Cameroon and awareness, treatment, and control rates are low. Efforts to improve detection, treatment, and control of hypertension in Cameroon are needed.

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