The prevalence of hypertension and its distribution by sociodemographic factors in Central Mozambique: a cross sectional study.

Publication Date:

1 Dec 2020


Matsuzaki M, Sherr K, Augusto O, Kawakatsu Y, Ásbjörnsdóttir K, Chale F, et al. (2020). The prevalence of hypertension and its distribution by sociodemographic factors in Central Mozambique: a cross sectional study. BMC Public Health. 20(1), 1843. doi: 10.1186/s12889-020-09947-0


Hypertension (HTN) is a major risk factor for cardiovascular diseases, and its prevalence has been rising in low- and middle-income countries. The current study describes HTN prevalence in central Mozambique, association between wealth and blood pressure (BP), and HTN monitoring and diagnosis practice among individuals with elevated BP.

The study used data from a cross-sectional, representative household survey conducted in Manica and Sofala provinces, Mozambique. There were 4101 respondents, aged ≥20 years. We measured average systolic and diastolic BP (SBP and DBP) from three measurements taken in the household setting. Elevated BP was defined as having either SBP ≥140 or DBP ≥90 mmHg.

The mean age of the participants was 36.7 years old, 59.9% were women, and 72.5% were from rural areas. Adjusting for complex survey weights, 15.7% (95%CI: 14.0 to 17.4) of women and 16.1% (13.9 to 18.5) of men had elevated BP, and 7.5% (95% CI: 6.4 to 8.7) of the overall population had both SBP ≥140 and DBP ≥90 mmHg. Among participants with elevated BP, proportions of participants who had previous BP measurement and HTN diagnosis were both low (34.9% (95% CI: 30.0 to 40.1) and 12.2% (9.9 to 15.0) respectively). Prior BP measurement and HTN diagnosis were more commonly reported among hypertensive participants with secondary or higher education, from urban areas, and with highest relative wealth. In adjusted models, wealth was positively associated with higher SBP and DBP.

The current study found evidence of positive association between wealth and BP. The prevalence of elevated BP was lower in Manica and Sofala provinces than the previously estimated national prevalence. Previous BP screening and HTN diagnosis were uncommon in our study population, especially among rural residents, individuals with lower education levels, and those with relatively less wealth. As the epidemiological transition advances in Mozambique, there is a need to develop and implement strategies to increase BP screening and deliver appropriate clinical services, as well as to encourage lifestyle changes among people at risk of developing hypertension in near future.

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