Prevalence in epidemiology is the proportion of a particular population found to be affected by a medical condition (typically a disease or a risk factor such as smoking or seat-belt use) at a specific time. It is derived by comparing the number of people found to have the condition with the total number of people studied, and is usually expressed as a fraction, a percentage, or the number of cases per 10,000 or 100,000 people.
Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is one of the top three causes of death in China. And the mortality of cardiovascular disease is 23.1%, that of cancer is 22.3%, and for cerebrovascular disease (CVD), 21.3%. Hypertension is a major risk factor for CVD, accounting for about 45% of global CVD morbidity and mortality in many developing countries, including China. Data from national surveys suggest that the prevalence of hypertension in the adult Chinese population has increased dramatically, from 5.11% in 1959 to 17.65% in 2002 according to the China National Nutrition and Health Survey. The recent Chinese guideline for managing hypertension suggests a treatment goal of lowering blood pressure to 140/90 mm Hg or below for the general hypertensive population. However, less than one quarter (24%) of the hypertensive population is aware, 78% of these are treated, and only 19% are controlled. That means only a small proportion of affected individuals with hypertension have their condition under control. Improving the population control of hypertension, as is highly recommended by the World Health Organization/International Society of Hypertension (ISH) WHO/ISH, requires increased awareness among the general population. However, there is lack of local data regarding prevalence, awareness, treatment and control in Wuhan, China.
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