Evaluation of hypertension knowledge among hypertensive and non-hypertensive adults: a crosssectional study from Palestine
Al Zabadi, Hamzeh
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Hypertension is one of the leading causes of morbidity and mortality worldwide and significantly contributes to the burden of non-communicable diseases especially in low and middle income countries like Palestine. The current study aimed to evaluate the level of knowledge on hypertension among the Palestinian hypertensive and non-hypertensive adults in the West Bank. The study was conducted in a cross-sectional design in Hebron, Ramallah, Nablus, and Tulkarm directorates in the West Bank. Convenient proportional sample from each directorate was selected with a total of 1200 subjects from all directorates. The participants were interviewed face to face for data collection using a previously validated hypertension knowledge level scale questionnaire (HK-LS) that included (among others) selfreported lifestyle, medication and clinical history questions. The questionnaire had 22 questions where a new continuous variable (score) was developed ranged from 0-22. In our study, the participants had an adequate level of knowledge regarding hypertension and they showed a good understanding of the main concepts (definition, medical treatment, lifestyle, diet, complications). The mean score for hypertensive and non-hypertensive participants were 18.22 and 16.74 respectively. This indicates that those with hypertension have superior knowledge amongst the two groups. Hypertensive participants’ results were related to some socio-demographic factors including city, age, educational level, and physician visit. On the other hand, non-hypertensive participants’ scores were associated with age, gender, marital status, smoking status, educational level, and physician visit. Knowledge of hypertension among the general population was acceptable and those with hypertension showed a higher level of knowledge in comparison to those without hypertension. There should be more focus on educational programs that help improve the knowledge about hypertension in the general population. There should also be an emphasis on the importance of the physicians’ role in the awareness and education of the patients.