100,000 Iranians die of hypertension annually: official

May 14, 2019

TEHRAN -- About 100,000 Iranians die of high blood pressure annually, Afshin Ostovar, the Health Ministry’s director for non-communicable diseases has said, ISNA reported on Tuesday.

Hypertension is a common condition in which the long-term force of the blood against your artery walls is high enough that it may eventually cause health problems, such as heart disease.

The National Campaign for Controlling Hypertension, which begins on May 17, World Hypertension Day, focuses on the issue as one of the most important disease lead to cardiovascular disease, which has about 40 percent share of the death in Iran.

Hypertension causes about 100,000 deaths in the country, he said, adding that 22 percent of Iranian women and 21 percent of Iranian men suffer from high pressure.

In addition, one third of Iranian population above 30 suffer from hypertension, he noted.

During past 25 years, the number of Iranians suffering from hypertension has increased by three-fold in Iran, he explained.

Some 60 percent of people who have hypertension are aware of their disease and about 6 million ones do not know about their hypertension, he said.

One of the main issues lead to hypertension is salt intake, which is three times more than standard amount is twice as much as global standards, he lamented.

World Health Organization (WHO) recommends that adults consume less than 5 grams (just under a teaspoon) of salt per day; however, based on global statistics, most people consume too much salt—on average 9–12 grams per day that is around twice the recommended maximum level of intake.

Besides over 50 percent of Iranians are insufficient physical active and smoking and alcohol consumption is on the third rank, he said.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO) insufficient physical activity is one of the leading risk factors for death worldwide. It is a key risk factor for noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) such as cardiovascular diseases, cancer and diabetes. More than 80% of the world's adolescent population is insufficiently physically active.

As a part of national campaign, the blood pressure is checked in stations established in different places like schools, hospitals and mosques, he said.

National Campaign for Controlling Hypertension

Kianoush Jahanpour, spokesman for Food and Drug Administration, said that according to the National Campaign for Controlling Hypertension, from May 17 to June 6, people are notified about the campaign, its subject and targets and from June 6 to July 6 the field works are carried out such as taking the blood pressure of target groups, registering their information and referring the patients to specialists.

“We anticipate that two million patients recognized by the campaign, which should be referred to specialists for further treatment,” he said.

 97,000 deaths caused by hypertension

Some 97,000 Iranians died of diseases caused by hypertension in 2017, according to Dr. Ramin Heshmat, who is an associate professor of epidemiology in Tehran University of Medical Sciences.

“Unfortunately, among 15 million Iranians who have high blood pressure, only 60% are aware of their condition; additionally, only half the patients who are aware of their hypertension, receive medication for it.”

“From 1990 to 2016, the prevalence of high blood pressure among Iranian adults grew three times,” said Dr. Heshmat.

“Unfortunately, among 15 million Iranians who have high blood pressure, only 60% are aware of their condition; additionally, only half the patients who are aware of their hypertension, receive medication for it.”

SB/MG

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