Hypertension is a highly prevalent disease worldwide, constituting one of the main risk factors for cardiovascular morbidity and mortality. The aims of this study were to evaluate the level of awareness and control of hypertension comparing sex, socioeconomic and educational level, BMI and drug therapy in over 40-year-old patients. The cost-effectiveness of the main pharmacologic classes of antihypertensives, as monotherapy and combination therapy, was also assessed.
In this randomized and cross-sectional populational study, a sample of 738 hypertensive adults with ages at least 40 years were evaluated. Of these, 345 (46.7%) were men and 393 (53.3%) were women.
A total of 72.9% of the hypertensives knew about their disease. Women in the 40–49 and 50–59 age groups and obese individuals had a higher rate of awareness of their hypertensive status. The rates of awareness were similar in different social classes and educational levels, however, blood pressure control varied. β-Blockers were the most effective drugs to control blood pressure with no differences being observed between monotherapy and combinations. Diuretics were the most cost-effective.
Approximately half of the participants received monotherapy. The best percentage of control with monotherapy was obtained with β-blockers but the diuretics treatment was the most cost-effective. The levels of awareness and control were high compared with developed countries, most evident in the higher social classes and higher education levels.
Internal Medicine Department, State Medical School of São José Rio Preto, São Paulo, Brazil
Received 15 January, 2009
Revised 17 April, 2009
Accepted 5 May, 2009
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