Kuruvilla John1, Prasanth Karakkad2, Elizebeth Vissac3
Prevalence of hypertension seems to be in increasing trend in adolescents and young men. This study has been conducted to find the prevalence of hypertension among school children in the age group 9-12 years to identify the relation between blood pressure and body mass index, Socioeconomic status, Family history of hypertension, diabetes, ischaemic heart disease and renal disease.
MATERIALS AND METHODS
This is a cross-sectional study done in randomly selected schools in Kannur district. Study was conducted among 1024 school children (Both boys and girls) in the age group 9-12 years studying in various schools in Kannur during September 2008 to August 2009. All children from selected class who gave consent were included. Exclusion criteria were absentees those who have not given the consent. Height and weight were recorded in all children by standard techniques as described by Indian Council of Medical Research and BMI was calculated. Blood pressure was recorded using a standard mercury sphygmomanometer. Data about family history, income, etc. were collected using questionnaire.
In our study, we observed that there is gradual increase in mean systolic and diastolic blood pressure in children as age advances. Prevalence of hypertension is 2.53%. The prevalence of systolic hypertension in whole group is 1.5%, 2.21% among boys and 0.8% among girls. The prevalence of diastolic hypertension in whole group is 0.87%. Among boys, it is 0.47% and in girls it is 1.03%. Correlation is found to be statistically significant. The prevalence of stage 1 hypertension is 2.06% and stage 2 hypertension is 0.47%. Body mass index has got a positive correlation with blood pressure. The prevalence of obesity in our study was 3.32%, overweight was 5.46%. Obesity was more among those with better socioeconomic status. 29.41% of the obese children are hypertensive in our study. Statistically, significant association was found between childhood hypertension and family history of hypertension, cardiovascular risk factors in parents. Statistically, no significant correlation is obtained between childhood hypertension and family history of diabetes and renal disease.
Hypertension in children is associated with higher BMI, family history of hypertension and ischaemic heart disease.