As Nigeria joins the rest of the world to mark World Hypertension Day (WHD), a Consultant Cardiologist at Nisa Premier Hospital Abuja, Dr Damar Shawarji, has called for life style modification in all hypertensive patients.
He gave the advice, Tuesday, at an event organised to commemorate WHD by the hospital in Abuja.
The theme for this year’s WHD: “Measure Your Blood Pressure, Control It, Live Longer” was chosen by The World Hypertension League based on current statistics showing uncomfortably low awareness and poor control of HBP.
Dr Shawarji noted that hypertension is a major cause of morbidity and mortality, and needs to be treated, noting that it is an extremely common condition which still remains under-diagnosed and undertreated.
Hypertension, he said, “is easy to diagnose and treat and the aim of management is to save the target organs from the deleterious effects of the condition.”
He observed that in 2010, hypertension in Sub-Saharan Africa was the leading risk for death, estimated to cause more than 500,000 deaths and 10 million years of life lost.
The cardiologist said “hypertension is the 6th leading risk for disability, stroke, the major clinical outcome of uncontrolled hypertension, increased 46% from 1990 to 2010 to become the 5th leading risk for death.
“Besides pharmacology, we have other choices and people need to be acquainted with these choices and life style modification should always be encouraged in all Hypertensive patients.
“Hypertension is a leading risk for dementia, renal failure, and fetal and maternal death in pregnancy.
“An estimated 7.3% of total health care
is directly related to increased BP and its complications in Sub-Saharan Africa. In 2001, more than $2 billion USD were spent on hypertension-related diseases.”
The cardiologist defined hypertension as systolic blood pressure (SBP) of 140 mmHg or greater, diastolic blood pressure (DBP) of 90 mmHg or greater (taken on 2 different days), or taking antihypertensive medication.