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The coming epidemic: hypertension in rural Kyrgyzstan, Central Asia


Eastern Europe is experiencing an epidemic of cardiovascular disease far outpacing rates in Western Europe. This epidemic was heralded by a precipitous rise in hypertension prevalence. The former Soviet states of Central Asia may be facing a similar epidemic. In order to access this threat, we performed a retrospective analysis of data generated during humanitarian medical visits to two villages in Kyrgyzstan, Central Asia. The age-adjusted prevalence of hypertension was 39%. Hypertension was much more common among men than women (46 vs 33%, respectively). In addition, the rise in blood pressure with age was striking, surpassing the experience in Western countries. This epidemic of hypertension may herald a coming epidemic of cardiovascular disease in Central Asia.

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Dr Young was supported by NIH NCRR K23 RR16056 and Dr Klag by NIH-NIDDK K-24 DK02856.

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Correspondence to J H Young.

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Conflicts of interest: none.

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Young, J., Parler, P., Bristol, B. et al. The coming epidemic: hypertension in rural Kyrgyzstan, Central Asia. J Hum Hypertens 19, 145–148 (2005).

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  • Central Asia
  • clinical care

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