Prevalence of Hypertension and Associated Factors in Ahvaz School Age Children in 2013

Document Type: Original article

Authors

1 Chronic Disease Care Research Center, Department of nursing, Ahvaz Jundishapur University of Medical Sciences, Ahvaz, Iran

2 Razi Hospital, Ahvaz Jundishapur University of Medical Sciences, Ahvaz, Iran

Abstract

Background: The underlying cause of high blood pressure in adulthood is rooted in childhood. The evidence points to higher prevalence of hypertension among children in recent years. This study aims to investigate the prevalence of high blood pressure among Ahvaz children, as a sample of Iranian kids, and compare it with relevant reports from other countries. Methods: This cross- sectional study was conducted in various parts of Ahvaz city on school children aged 6-12 from March to June 2013. We measured the height, weight, systolic and diastolic blood pressure, using standardized methods. Systolic and diastolic blood pressure ≥95 percentile for age and sex was identified as hypertension. To analyze the data, statistical tests such as Chi-square, T-test, ANOVA, and Pearson correlation coefficient were used.Results: Overall, 1100 school children (564 boys and 536 girls) participated in the study. The highest level of blood pressure was found among obese children (26.4%) aged 11-12 years. Systolic blood pressure of 9.7% of children was in the pre-hypertension phase and 23.6% of them in the hypertensive phase. Also, with regards to diastolic pressure, 13.5% and 17.1% of the children had pre-hypertension and hypertension, respectively.Conclusion: Considering the high prevalence of hypertension in school children in Ahvaz, we suggest developing a sustainable training program based on intervention for proper nutrition and physical activity in this age group to the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Education.

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