Risk factors for coronary heart disease in the white community of Durban

  • Y K Seedat
  • F G H Mayet
  • E Gouws


Coronary heart disease (CHD) is the leading cause of death among the white and Indian populations of Durban. This was a community-based study of the white population of Durban, which is predominantly English-speaking. There were 396 subjects (194 men, 202 women) aged 15 - 69 years. A history of CHD was present in 9,3% of the subjects. The important risk factors were hypercholesterolaemia, hypertension and smoking. The minor risk factors were obesity, hypertriglyceridaemia, hypeuricaemia, a sedentary occupation and a history of CHD in the immediate family. Electrocardiograph abnormalities denoting CHD were present in 17% of subjects. A study of the major risk factors showed that 35,1% (age and sex adjusted) had at least one major risk factor at the higher level (level A) and 33,8% (age and sex adjusted) at the lower risk levels (level B). When the combination of risk factors was taken into account, 15,2% and 28% had two major risk factors, one each at levels A and B respectively. On average the percentage of men and women with one risk factor or more increased with age. A protective high-density lipoprotein/total cholesterol ratio≥20% was present in 53,5% of the respondents. Because of the severe nature of CHD, an intensive programme for the primary prevention of CHD risk factors should be instituted.


Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 0256-95749
print ISSN: 2078-5135