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Knowledge, attitudes, and practices on hypertension in a country in epidemiological transition.
Assessment of knowledge, attitudes, and practices (KAP) is a crucial element of hypertension control, but little information is available from developing countries where hypertension has lately been recognized as a major health problem. Therefore, we examined KAP on hypertension in a random sample of 1067 adults aged 25 to 64 years from the Seychelles Islands (Indian Ocean). KAP were assessed from an administered structured questionnaire. The age-standardized prevalence of hypertension (screening blood pressure [BP] > or = 160/95 mm Hg or taking antihypertensive medication) was 36% in men and 25% in women aged 25 to 64 years. Among hypertensive persons, 50% were aware of the condition, 34% were treated, and 10% had controlled BP (ie, BP <160/95 mm Hg). Most persons, whether nonhypertensive, unaware hypertensive, or aware hypertensive, had good basic knowledge related to hypertension determinants and consequences, possibly an effect of a nationwide cardiovascular disease prevention program over the last years. However, favorable outcome expectation, positive attitudes, and appropriate practices for hypertension and relevant healthy lifestyles were found in smaller proportions of participants, with little difference between aware hypertensives, unaware hypertensives, and nonhypertensives. Furthermore, hypertensive persons with other concurrent cardiovascular risk factors affecting the overall heart risk knew well the detrimental effects of these other factors but reported making little actual change to control them (particularly regarding overweight and sedentary habits). These data point to the need to maximize the efficiency of hypertension prevention and control programs so that delay in achieving effective hypertension control is minimized in countries experiencing recent emergence of hypertension as a major public health problem.
Adult, Developing Countries, Female, Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice, Humans, Hypertension, Indian Ocean Islands, Male, Middle Aged
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