Prevalence of risk factors for hypertension: A cross-sectional study in an urban area of Bangladesh


  • Shiekh Mohammed Shariful Islam 1. International Center for Diarrheal Disease Research, Bangladesh (ICDDR-B), Dhaka, Bangladesh 2. Center for International Health (CIH), Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität (LMU), Munich, Germany
  • A KM Mainuddin International Center for Diarrheal Disease Research, Bangladesh (ICDDR-B), Dhaka, Bangladesh
  • Md Serajul Islam Department of Community Medicine, Ad-din Sakina Medical College, Jessore, Bangladesh
  • Mohammad Azizul Karim National Institute of Cardiovascular Diseases (NICVD), Dhaka, Bangladesh
  • Sabrina Zaman Mou Department of Pharmacy, University of Dhaka, Bangladesh
  • Shamsul Arefin International Center for Diarrheal Disease Research, Bangladesh (ICDDR-B), Dhaka, Bangladesh
  • Kamrun Nahar Chowdhury National Centre for Control of Rheumatic Fever and Heart Disease (NCCRFHD), Dhaka, Bangladesh


Background: Hypertension is a major risk factor for several cardiovascular diseases (CVD). The prevalence of hypertension is increasing in Bangladesh, especially in urban areas. The objective of this study was to estimate the prevalence of hypertension and its risk factors in an urban area of Bangladesh. 

Methods: We conducted a cross-sectional survey involving participants aged ≥ 25 years in an urban area in Dhaka between June-December 2012, using multi-stage random sampling. Data on socioeconomic status, tobacco use, physical activity, diet, extra-salt use, family history of hypertension, CVD, anthropometric measurements and blood pressure were collected using modified WHO-STEPS protocol. Hypertension and pre-hypertension were defined according to JNC-7. Multiple logistic regressions models were used to identify risk factors associated with hypertension. 

Results: The overall age-adjusted prevalence hypertension and pre-hypertension among 730 participants was 23.7% and 19%, respectively, which was higher among males compared to females (23.6% vs 21.71% and 21.7% vs 17.0%, respectively). Bivariate analysis showed significant relationship of hypertension with age, BMI, no physical activity, tobacco use, extra salt intake and family history of stroke/cardiovascular disease. In the multivariate model, factors significantly associated with hypertension were older age (OR 19.18, 95% CI 13.58–28.11), smoking (OR 3.47, 95% CI 2.85–5.19), extra salt intake (OR 1.13, 95% CI 1.04–2.21), and high waist circumference (OR 3.41, 95% CI 2.81–5.29). 

Conclusions: The prevalence of hypertension and pre-hypertension was high among our study participants. Population-based intervention programs and policies for increased awareness about the risk factors, and life-style modification are essential for prevention of hypertension.






Research articles