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46 per cent hypertension patients unaware of disease: Study
Hypertension, which is regarded as a silent killer, could well risk to be true in the State, as around 46 per cent of those suffering from blood pressure and hypertension here are unaware that they have the non-communicable disease, a study stated.
The findings, revealed recently in the India Heart Study, come after the blood pressure of 18,918 participants (male and female) across 15 States, including 2,293 people from Tamil Nadu, were examined by 1,233 doctors over a period of nine months.
With the blood pressure of the participants monitored at home four times in a day for seven consecutive days, the study revealed that 25.1 per cent of the respondents from Tamil Nadu had high blood pressure levels, while 46 percent had both blood pressure and hypertension but were unaware of having it.
Finding that Indians have an average resting heart rate of 80 beats per minute- higher than the desired rate of 72 beats per minute, the study highlights the need for better clinical management of hypertension in India as medical experts who conducted the study say that it is important to study blood pressure levels over a few days’ time, especially in those people showing elevated levels of blood pressure.
Dr S Shanmugasundaram, cardiologist at Billroth Hospitals, said that it is alarming to see the high prevalence of hypertension in the State. Much worse is the fact that a majority of people having hypertension are not aware of having the condition. “The study reconfirms that hypertension is often asymptotic but detected by routine resting. Early detection and appropriate treatment can prevent stroke, heart attack, kidney failure, etc. which is made possible and practical with home monitoring using automated apparatus,” he said.
Another finding from the study is that unlike other countries, Indians have higher blood pressure in the evenings than in the mornings, which should guide doctors to rethink the timing of advising anti-hypertensive drug dosage.
“Different patients may have different co-morbidities, like diabetes, which makes the use of validated devices for home blood pressure monitoring important. Home blood pressure monitors for pregnant women, adolescents and people with kidney disorders needs to be validated separately,” said Dr Willem Verberk, cardiologist, Cardiovascular Research Institute, Maastricht.