African Health Sciences

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Prevalence, patterns and factors associated with hypertensive crises in Mulago hospital emergency department; a cross-sectional study

Irene Nakalema, Mark Kaddumukasa, Jane Nakibuuka, Emmy Okello, Martha Sajatovic, Elly Katabira


Background: Hypertension is increasing in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) and it’s the single most important modifiable stroke risk factor, yet it’s control is not routinely emphasized. The prevalence, pattern and factors associated with hypertensive urgencies and emergencies in Uganda is not well established. A cross-sectional study, was conducted between November 2015 and February 2016, using a complete clinical examination and pre-tested standardized questionnaire subjects were enrolled. The prevalence of hypertensive crises and associations of demo- graphic and clinical factors determined using logistic regression.

Results: The prevalence of hypertensive crises was 5.1%, (203/4000) of all admissions at the medical section of the accident and emergency ward of Mulago National Referral  Hospital.  The hypertensive urgencies and emergencies accounted for 32.5% and 67.5% respectively among study subjects with hypertension. Among those with hypertensive crises, 41.1% were aged 45-65 years and half were female. Self-reported compliance was significantly different between those with hypertensive crisis compared to non-hypertensive crisis with OR; (95% CI) 52.4; (24.5 – 111.7), p-value =<0.001. Acute stroke was the commonest hyper- tensive emergency.

Conclusion: Hypertensive emergencies are common and significantly associated with poor compliance to prescribed anti-hy- pertensive drugs. Acute stroke is the commonest presentation in our setting.

Keywords: Hypertensive crises, prevalence, factors associated.
AJOL African Journals Online