Prevalence of Undiagnosed Cardiovascular Risk Factors in Adults Aged 20 - 40: A Cross-Sectional Study in 2016 in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia

Faisal Saed Alharthi, Jamilah Saad Alrahimi, Abdulrahman Ali Alotaibi, Daniah Ahmed Alhamdi, Bashair Mohammed Ibrahim, Yasmina Aymen Badeeb


Background: Cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) are the first leading cause of death worldwide. In Saudi Arabia, CVDs are the major killers with a mortality rate of 46%. CVD risk factors are not exclusive to old populations. Thus, the purpose of this study was to approximately find the prevalence of these risk factors, particularly high blood pressure (HBP), high blood glucose (HBG), obesity, and smoking.

Methods: This cross-sectional was conducted in May 2016 and took place in the Ambulatory Care Center of King Abdulaziz Medical City, Jeddah. We used a non-probability convenience sampling technique where only individuals aged 20 - 40 who were free of medical illnesses were included. We excluded pregnant women and people on medications that might interfere with our measurements. We obtained a brief history and measured blood pressure, blood glucose, height and weight. Data analysis was done in form of frequencies. Chi-square test was utilized to compare qualitative variables. P < 0.05 was used to determine statistical significance.

Results: A total of 507 participants were included (76.3% males and 23.7% females). All participants were between 20 and 40 with a mean age of 31.6 ± 6.06 SD. We found the prevalence of undiagnosed HBP to be 8.3% and males showed a significantly higher percentage (P < 0.001) when compared to females. HBG prevalence was only 0.6%. Regarding body mass index, the prevalence of overweight and obesity together was 66.3% and males showed significantly higher percentage in falling in this category (P < 0.001). Smoking prevalence was 37.9% with a significantly higher percentage among males (P < 0.001).

Conclusion: CVD risk factors are apparently quite common in young adults. Efforts must be made to increase the public awareness regarding these risk factors. CVDs are not exclusive to old people. Thus, the public should appreciate this fact in order to prevent these risk factors by establishing healthy life-styles.

Cardiol Res. 2017;8(3):111-116



Cardiovascular; Risk factors; Prevalence; Undiagnosed

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