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Original scientific paper

Prevalence and Correlates of Hypertension in a Transitional South-eastern European Population: Results from the Albanian Demographic and Health Survey

Elizana Petrela ; Department of Public Health, Faculty of Medicine, Tirana University, Tirana, Albania
Genc Burazeri ; Department of International Health, School for Public Health and Primary Care (CAPHRI), Faculty of Health, Medicine and Life Sciences, University of Maastricht, Maastricht, The Netherlands
Fatjona Pupuleku ; Institute of Statistics (INSTAT)3, Tirana, Albania
Edmond Zaimi ; Service of Emergency Medicine, University Hospital Centre “Mother Teresa”, Tirana, Albania
Mizanur Rahman ; MEASURE Evaluation, University of North Carolina, and International Centre for Diarrhoeal Disease Research, Bangladesh (ICDDR,B)

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We assessed the prevalence and socioeconomic and behavioural correlates of hypertension in the young to middle-aged population of Albania, a transitional post-communist country in the Western Balkans. We analysed a sample of 2,837 men and 3,580 women aged 15 to 49 from the 2008/2009 Albanian Demographic and Health Survey. Hypertension was defined as SBP≥140 mm Hg, or DBP≥90 mm Hg, or if the subjects were under treatment for hypertension. Data on demographic and socioeconomic characteristics and behavioural factors were also collected. Logistic regression was used to assess the association of hypertension with covariates. Hypertension was significantly higher among men (27.3 %) than women (20.0 %), and significantly increased with age. The harmful effect of excessive weight and obesity on hypertension was stronger among women than among men and this effect increased with age, especially in women. Smoking and alcohol were risk factors for hypertension in men, but not women. Education had a protective effect on hypertension in women but not in men.


blood pressure; obesity; risk factors; socioeconomic and behavioural correlates of hypertension

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