Prevalence of hyperhomocysteinaemia, selected determinants and relation to hypertension severity in Northern-Nigerian hypertensives: the ABU homocysteine survey

  • Obiageli U. Onyemelukwe
  • Bilkisu B Maiha
Keywords: Hypertension; Homocysteine; Blood pressure; Northern-Nigerians


Background: This study aimed at evaluating the prevalence of hyperhomocysteinaemia in Northern-Nigerian hypertensives and its association with hypertension severity and some major determinants as data regarding these are lacking
in sub-Saharan Africa.

Method: A Community-based cross-sectional study done on 120 randomly-selected hypertensive patients who responded to an ABU radio frequency modulated invitation for free health-screening at the Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) Medical Centre from January 2016 to June 2016. The percentage of participants with high homocysteine levels, their anthropometric parameters and blood pressures were determined. Plasma homocysteine (hcy) was classified as normal (5-15), moderate (>15-30), intermediate (31-100) and severe (>100) μmol/L. Kruskal-Wallis test was applied and log-transformed homocysteine (Ln10Homocysteine) was correlated with systolic and diastolic blood pressures as well as age, body mass index, fasting blood glucose, glomerular filtration rate, hypertension duration and Ln10folate in males and females using the Pearson’s Correlation analysis.

Results: There were 83(69.2%) females and 37(30.8%) males with Median homocysteine of 20.8 μmol/L and 22.0 μmol/L respectively (p=0.003). Hyperhomocysteinaemia was found in 118(98.3%) hypertensives while 2(1.7%) subjects had normo-homocysteinaemia. Moderate hyperhomocysteinaemia (Median, 20.8 μmol/L) was identified in 105(87.5%) and intermediate (Median, 40 μmol/L) in 13(10.8%) (p<0.001). No subject had severe hyperhomocysteinaemia.
Homocysteine was higher (p=0.003) in subjects with Stage 2 systolic hypertension. Ln10Homocysteine was significantly (p<0.001) correlated with blood pressure (SBP: r=0.45; DBP: r=0.40) and age (r=0.33).

Conclusion: The prevalence of hyperhomocysteinaemia in North-Western Nigerian hypertensives is high as against normal healthy controls. Plasma homocysteine is higher with severe systolic hypertension and positively associated with age.

Keywords: Hypertension, Homocysteine, Blood pressure, Northern-Nigerians

Funding: No specific grants but Micro Nova Pharmaceuticals Limited, Nigeria and Emzor Pharmaceutical Industries, Lagos, Nigeria supported with drugs.


Journal Identifiers

print ISSN: 0016-9560