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Global Health
August 21, 2013

Hypertension-Related Deaths Increasing in Sub-Saharan Africa

JAMA. 2013;310(7):682. doi:10.1001/jama.2013.276461

Hypertension-related conditions are the most common cause of death from noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) in sub-Saharan Africa, according to a 3-year prospective study carried out by Tanzanian and US investigators (Peck RN et al. J Hypertens. doi:10.1097/HJH.0b013e328362bad7 [published online June 17, 2013]).

From 2009 to 2011, the researchers documented 11 045 consecutive adult admissions at Weill Bugando Medical Center, a leading teaching hospital in Tanzania. They found that almost half of all admissions, hospital stays, and deaths were due to NCDs. Hypertension-related diseases were responsible for 34% of all NCD deaths and 15% of all deaths. Stroke was the leading cause of death in patients who had hypertension-related conditions.