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Prevalence and control of cardiovascular risk factors in Romania cardio-zone national study
Background. Cardiovascular disease (CVD) – including Coronary Artery Disease, Stroke, or Peripheral Arterial Disease – is the leading cause of mortality in Romania. Several risk factors (obesity – OB, smoking – SM, hypertension – HT, diabetes mellitus – DM, or hypercholesterolemia – Hchol) are associated with the development of CVD and their prevalence may vary by region of the country. However, there are few estimates of CVD risk factors burden or of its control status in Romania.
Aims. 1) to evaluate the prevalence of CVD and its risk factors in a general practitioners population among different regions in Romania and 2) to assess the status of control of CVD risk factors in this population.
Design. A cross-sectional study was conducted among an 8 EURO-regions in Romania (Bucharest, Muntenia, Oltenia, Banat, Crisana, Transilvania, Moldova and Dobrogea) between April and June 2006. From 17,330 questionnaires, 3,124 eligible individuals aged between 18 – 85 year old, 61 % female, were randomly selected to create a representative sample to respect age, gender and regional population distribution.
Methods. The following were standardly assessed: weight and height for calculation of body mass index, smoking status, arterial pressure, blood sample for measuring basal glucose and total cholesterol, history of angina and medical history questionnaire.
Results. The global prevalence of major CV risk factors (95% CI) was: HT – 39.1%, known DM – 11.8%, Hchol 31.4%, and SM – 21.7%. The general prevalence of the obesity was 26.3%, while the presence of other risk factors significantly increased the prevalence of OB (43% in diabetics vs 24% in nondiabetics, p<0.05). There was not significant difference of the CV risk factors prevalence among the EUROregions, except Banat, where the prevalence of OB and HT was higher (38.3%, respectively 42.7%) and Muntenia, where the prevalence of diabetes was higher (22.6%). The presence of history of angina and stroke was significantly increased in diabetics when compared with non-diabetics (34.2% vs 11.5%, p<0.05 and 9.3% vs 2.5%, p<0.05). Despite the treatment, adequate control of blood pressure, blood glucose or total cholesterol was present in only 22.3% of patients with HT, 19.6% of patients with DM, and 39% of those with Hchol.
Conclusions. 1. General prevalence of CVD and its risk factors in Romania is high and there are no important differences in risk factors among the 8 EURO-regions. 2. Effective risk factors control among the general practitioners population is still poor.