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Hypertension: adherence to treatment in rural Bangladesh - findings from a population-based study


Khanam, MA and Lindeboom, W and Koehlmoos, TLP and Alam, DS and Niessen, L and Milton, AH, Hypertension: adherence to treatment in rural Bangladesh - findings from a population-based study, Global Health Action, 7, (1) pp. 1-9. ISSN 1654-9880 (2014) [Refereed Article]


Copyright Statement

Copyright 2014 Masuma Akter Khanam et al. Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)

DOI: doi:10.3402/gha.v7.25028


Background: Poor adherence has been identified as the main cause of failure to control hypertension. Poor adherence to antihypertensive treatment is a significant cardiovascular risk factor, which often remains unrecognized. There are no previous studies that examined adherence with antihypertensive medication or the characteristics of the non-adherent patients in Bangladesh.

Objective: This paper aims to describe hypertension and factors affecting adherence to treatment among hypertensive persons in rural Bangladesh.

Design: The study population included 29,960 men and women aged 25 years and older from three rural demographic surveillance sites of the International Center for Diarrheal Disease Research, Bangladesh (icddr,b): Matlab, Abhoynagar, and Mirsarai. Data was collected by a cross-sectional design on diagnostic provider, initial, and current treatment. Discontinuation of medication at the time of interview was defined as non-adherence to treatment.

Results: The prevalence of hypertension was 13.67%. Qualified providers diagnosed only 53.5% of the hypertension (MBBS doctors 46.1 and specialized doctors 7.4%). Among the unqualified providers, village doctors diagnosed 40.7%, and others (nurse, health worker, paramedic, homeopath, spiritual healer, and pharmacy man) each diagnosed less than 5%. Of those who started treatment upon being diagnosed with hypertension, 26% discontinued the use of medication. Age, sex, education, wealth, and type of provider were independently associated with non-adherence to medication. More men discontinued the treatment than women (odds ratio [OR] 1.74, confidence interval [CI] 1.48-2.04). Non-adherence was greater when hypertension was diagnosed by unqualified providers (OR 1.52, CI 1.31-1.77). Hypertensive patients of older age, least poor quintile, and higher education were less likely to be non-adherent. Patients with cardiovascular comorbidity were also less likely to be non-adherent to antihypertensive medication (OR 0.79, CI 0.64-0.97).

Conclusions: Although village doctors diagnose 40% of hypertension, their treatments are associated with a higher rate of non-adherence to medication. The hypertension care practices of the village doctors should be explored by additional research. More emphasis should be placed on men, young people, and people with low education. Health programs focused on education regarding the importance of taking continuous antihypertensive medication is now of utmost importance.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:hypertension, Bangladesh, findings, population-based study
Research Division:Health Sciences
Research Group:Public health
Research Field:Preventative health care
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Specific population health (excl. Indigenous health)
Objective Field:Rural and remote area health
ID Code:115791
Year Published:2014
Web of Science® Times Cited:30
Deposited By:Health Sciences
Deposited On:2017-04-10
Last Modified:2017-05-23
Downloads:126 View Download Statistics

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