Blood pressure profile in Nigerian children

  • LJ Hamidu
  • EO Okoro
  • MA Ali


Objective: To observe blood pressure (BP) pattern and its correlates in primary school children of northern Nigeria.
Design: Sitting BP and pulse were measured in quadruplicate, then repeated after four weeks in 1,721 healthy children aged five to 16 years. Body weight and height were also measured in their school environment.
Setting: Primary schools located in three communities in Zaria Local Government Area (LGA) of Kaduna State, Nigeria. The communities were Tudun Wada (University community of migrants with some indigenous Hausa settlers), Zaria City (traditional Hausa community) and Zaria Kewaye (a rural Hausa settlement).
Results: BP rose with age. However, BP levels particularly systolic was highest in children from Tudun Wada (TW) (urban), followed by those from Zaria city (ZC) (semi urban), and Zaria Kewaye (ZK) (rural). The mean systolic/diastolic BP (mmHg) were: 99/61, 94/62 and
89/60 in children aged five to ten years; and 112/69, 109/68 and 107/68 in those older than 10 years respectively. The differences in BP levels were evident even as early as the age of five years and appears largely independent of physical stature and gender.
Conclusion: These observations suggest that place of residence and ethnicity may be important factors in the progression of BP with age in some children in northern Nigeria.

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eISSN: 0012-835X