Knowledge on hypertension in Myanmar: levels and groups at risk

Zinzi Pardoel*, Robert Lensink, Maarten Postma, Hla Hla Win, Khin Hnin Swe, Claire Stein, Ratih Febrinasari, Hoang My Hanh, Jaap Koot, Johanna Landsman, Menno Reijneveld

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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Abstract

Background: Non-communicable diseases, specifically the burden of hypertension, have become a major public health threat to low- and middle-income countries, such as Myanmar. Inadequate knowledge of hypertension and its management among people may hinder its effective prevention and treatment with some groups at particular increased risks, but evidence on this is lacking for Myanmar. The aims of this study were therefore to assess the level of knowledge of risk factors, symptoms and complications of hypertension, by hypertension treatment status, community group-membership, and sociodemographic and socioeconomic factors in Myanmar.

Methods: Data was collected through structured questionnaires in 2020 on a random sample of 660 participants, stratified by region and existence of community groups. Knowledge of hypertension was measured with the ‘Knowledge’ part of a validated ‘Knowledge, Attitude and Practice’ survey questionnaire and categorised into ill-informed and reasonably to well-informed about hypertension.

Results: The majority of respondents were reasonably to well-informed about risk factors, symptoms and complications of hypertension. This did not vary by hypertension treatment status and community group membership. People with jobs (B=0.96; 95%-confidence interval 0.343 to 1.572) and higher education (B=1.96; 0.060 to 3.868) had more hypertension knowledge than people without jobs or low education. Adherence to treatment among hypertensive people was low.

Conclusion: This study shows a majority of participants in Myanmar to be reasonably to well-informed, with no differences by hypertension status, treatment status, and community group-membership. People without jobs and low education have less hypertension knowledge and almost half of the hypertensive patients did not take their medicines, making them priority groups for tailored education on health care level as well as community level, lowering the burden of hypertension. Therefore, adherence to treatment of hypertension should be an important element for future health education
Original languageEnglish
Article number13
Number of pages22
JournalOpen Research Europe
Volume2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 21-Mar-2023

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