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Citation Information

Type Journal Article - Population health metrics
Title Ethnic differences in prevalence and risk factors for hypertension in the Suriname Health Study: a cross sectional population study
Volume 14
Issue 1
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2016
URL https://pophealthmetrics.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12963-016-0102-4
Limited information is available about the prevalence, ethnic disparities, and risk factors of hypertension within developing countries. We used data from a nationwide study on non-communicable disease (NCD) risk factors to estimate, explore, and compare the prevalence of hypertension overall and in subgroups of risk factors among different ethnic groups in Suriname.

The Suriname Health Study used the World Health Organization Steps design to select respondents with a stratified multistage cluster sample of households. The overall and ethnic specific prevalences of hypertension were calculated in general and in subgroups of sex, age, marital status, educational level, income status, employment, smoking status, residence, physical activity, body mass index (BMI), and waist circumference (WC). Differences in the prevalence between ethnic subgroups were assessed using the Chi-square test. We used several adjustment models to explore whether the observed ethnic differences were explained by biological, demographic, lifestyle, or anthropometric risk factors.

The prevalence of hypertension was 26.2 % (95 % confidence interval 25.1 %-27.4 %). Men had higher mean values for systolic and diastolic blood pressure compared to women. Blood pressure increased with age. The prevalence was highest for Creole, Hindustani, and Javanese and lowest for Amerindians, Mixed, and Maroons. Differences between ethnic groups were measured in the prevalence of hypertension in subcategories of sex, marital status, education, income, smoking, physical activity, and BMI. The major difference in association of ethnic groups with hypertension was between Hindustani and Amerindians.

The prevalence of hypertension in Suriname was in the range of developing countries. The highest prevalence was found in Creoles, Hindustani, and Javanese. Differences in the prevalence of hypertension were observed between ethnic subgroups with biological, demographic, lifestyle, and anthropometric risk factors. These findings emphasize the need for ethnic-specific research and prevention and intervention programs.

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