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Pattern of ECG abnormalities in Nigerian hypertensive patients seen in University of Port Harcourt Teaching Hospital
Objective: The aim of the study was to document the pattern of EGG abnormalities in the hypertensive patients in Port Harcourt and to compare their prevalence with what obtains in the apparently normal population as documented in previous studies.
Methods: The electrocardiographic profile of one hundred and thirty two consecutive hypertensive patients seen at the consultant medical clinic of the University of Port Harcourt Teaching Hospital were studied prospectively. All patients were above 15 years of age with blood pressures above 140/90 mmHg taken at more than two visits. As part of their investigations, twelve lead surface electrocardiograms were recorded. They were interpreted by either of the authors and data were analyzed by simple statistical methods. P value was taken as significant if up to or below 0.5.
Results: The abnormalities identified were left ventricular hypertrophy(LVH)in37.1%, left axis deviation(LAD) in 30.3%, sinus tachycardia 25.0%,left atrial enlargement(LAE) in 21.2%, atrial fibrillation(AF) in 3.8%, right bundle branch block (RBBB) in 1.5% and left anterior hemi block (LAH) in 0.8%. There were no cases of myocardial infarction nor pathological Q waves.
Conclusion: The study concluded that ECG abnormalities are prevalent in our hypertensive patients and given their prognostic significance, the surface ECG remains relevant as one of the first line investigations in these patients.
Keywords: Nigerians, Hypertension, ECG abnormalities, Prevalence, Port-Harcourt
Port Harcourt Medical Journal Vol. 2 (1) 2007: pp. 22-26