Twelve-year Blood Pressure Dynamics in Adults in Ljubljana Area, Slovenia: Contribution of WHO Countrywide Integrated Noncommunicable Diseases Intervention Program

Bulc, Mateja; Fras, Zlatko; Zaletel-Kragelj, Lijana
June 2006
Croatian Medical Journal;2006, Vol. 47 Issue 3, p469
Academic Journal
Aim To determine 12-year dynamics of the average value of arterial blood pressure and arterial hypertension prevalence among adult residents of Ljubljana area in Slovenia, and to assess the probable contribution of World Health Organization's Countrywide Integrated Noncommunicable Diseases Intervention Program (CINDI) to observed dynamics. Methods A total of 4409 adults aged 25-64 participated in three successive cross-sectional surveys performed in Ljubljana area from late autumn to early spring 1990/1991, 1996/1997, and 2002/2003 (n1990/91 = 1692, n1996/97 = 1342, n1990/91 = 1375). Standardized measurements of systolic and diastolic blood pressure were performed. The subjects were considered to have hypertension if systolic/diastolic blood pressure was ≥140/90 mm Hg. The dynamics of average values of systolic and diastolic blood pressures and arterial hypertension was statistically assessed with multiple linear or logistic regression. Results After the adjustment for the effects of sex, age, and education, the average value of systolic blood pressure remained almost the same between 1990/1991 and 1996/1997 (130.6 ± 20.3 and 130.6 ± 19.6 mm Hg, respectively; P = 0.728), whereas it significantly decreased to 127.6 ± 17.8 mm Hg in 2002/2003 (P<0.001). The average value of diastolic blood pressure was not significantly different in 1990/1991, 1996/1997, and 2002/2003 (83.4 ± 11.6 mm Hg, 84.1 ± 11.4 mm Hg, and 83.5 ± 11.2 mm Hg, respectively; P = 0.059). The odds ratio for arterial hypertension increased significantly between 1990/1991 and 1996/1997 (P = 0.001), but decreased between 1996/1997 and 2002/2003 (P = 0.135). Conclusions The values of blood pressure remained unchanged or increased during the first half of 12-year period, but decreased during the second half. The favorable decrease in average blood pressure could be attributed to systematic intervention promoted by CINDI program activities in Slovenia, which started in the late 1990s.


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