Prevalence of hypertension and associated risk factors in six Nicaraguan communities. Academic Article uri icon


  • Describe the prevalence of hypertension.Population based cross-sectional survey.Six Nicaraguan communities with varying economies.1,355 adults aged 20-60 years who completed both self-reported and quantitative measures of health.Prevalence of hypertension (systolic > or = 140 mm Hg, diastolic > or = 90 mm Hg, or self-reported medical history with diagnosis by a health care professional), uncontrolled hypertension (systolic > or = 140 mm Hg or diastolic > or = 90 mm Hg), diabetes (urinary glucose excretion > or = 100 mg/ dL or self-reported medical history diagnosed by a health care professional), and uncontrolled diabetes (urinary glucose excretion > or =100 mg/dL only).The prevalence of hypertension was 22.0% (19.2% in men, 24.2% in women). Blood pressure was controlled in 31.0% of male hypertensives and 55.1% of female hypertensives (odds ratio [OR] 2.86; 95% confidence interval [Cl] 1.74-4.69). Older age and higher body mass index were strongly associated with hypertension. Women who completed primary school had a lower risk of hypertension (OR .40; 95% Cl .19-.85) compared to those with no formal education. A history of living in both urban and rural settings was associated with lower prevalence of hypertension (OR .52; 95% CI .34-.79). Diabetes mellitus was found in 1.2% of men and 4.3% of women. Male sex was independently associated with decreased risk of diabetes (OR .31; 95% Cl .11-.86).At least one cardiovascular risk factor was found in half of this Nicaraguan sample. Cardiovascular risk factors should be the target of educational efforts, screening, and treatment.

publication date

  • January 1, 2012