Correlates of Hypertension among Persons Living with HIV at Livingstone Central Hospital: A Crosssectional study
Background: Persons living with HIV (PLWH) are more likely to develop hypertension and cardiovascular disease than the HIV-negative population. The new hypertension guidelines by the American Heart Association (AHA) and the American College of Cardiology (ACC) lowered the definition of hypertension from systolic and diastolic blood pressure (BP) of ≥ 140/90mmHg to ≥ 130/80, respectively. This study was aimed at determining the prevalence and factors associated with hypertension in PLWH in Livingstone using the new hypertension diagnostic criteria.
Methods: This was a cross-sectional study. We recruited 226 antiretroviral treated PLWH attending routine visits. Socio-demographic, health and clinical data including BP readings were collected. Interviewer-structured questionnaires adapted from the World Health Organization Stepwise approach to Surveillance ( WHO STEPs) and the international physical activity questionnaire (IPAQ) were used to collect data. Statistical evaluations were employed to elucidate relationships between hypertension and all response variables.
Results: The prevalence of hypertension using the old and new guidelines was 16% and 42%, respectively. Factors significantly associated with increased and reduced odds of developing hypertension after adjustments in multivariate logistic regression were age, body mass index (BMI), employment status, fasting blood sugar (FBS) and table salt consumption, respectively (p<0.05 for all). Using the new AHA/ACC criteria for hypertension shifted the prevalence from 16% (old criteria) to 42%.
Conclusion: The prevalence of hypertension in PLH in Livingstone was 42% and the major risk factors associated with hypertensionin PLWH wereincreasing age, BMI and FBS. We recommend the inclusion of FBS in routine measurements in PLWH. The AHA/ ACC new guidelines should be reenforced in low-cost settings to increase the treatment ofh ypertension among PLWH.
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