Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11889/8063
Title: Cardiovascular risk factor trends in the Eastern Mediterranean region: evidence from four countries is alarming
Authors: Sozmen, Kaan 
Unal, Belgin 
Said, Olfa 
Ben Romdhane, Habiba 
Abu-Rmeileh, Niveen M. E. 
Husseini, Abdullatif 
Fouad, Fouad 
Maziak, Wasim 
Bennett, Kathleen 
O’Flaherty, Martin 
Capewell, Simon 
Critchley, Julia 
Keywords: Cardiovascular Diseases - Risk Factors - Mediterranean Region;Heart Diseases - Risk Factors - Mediterranean Region;Social medicine - Mediterranean Region
Issue Date: 2014
Publisher: Int J Public Health
Abstract: Many Eastern Mediterranean countries are undergoing dramatic socioeconomic, demographic and lifestyle changes and face noncommunicable disease (NCD) epidemics. We evaluated recent trends in major NCD risk factors in occupied Palestinian territories (OPT), Turkey, Syria and Tunisia. Methods We searched published and unpublished sources for systolic blood pressure (SBP), diabetes, smoking, body mass index (BMI), and cholesterol trends for both men and women aged 35–84 in each country from 1995 to 2009. Results Smoking prevalence was stable over time in Tunisia and Syria, but decreasing in Turkey (annual change -0.9 %) and OPT (annual change -0.7 %). Mean BMI (annual change of 0.1 % for Turkey, 0.2 % for OPT and Tunisia and 0.3 % in Syria) and diabetes (annual change of 0.3 % for Turkey, 0.4 % for OPT and Tunisia and 0.7 % in Syria) prevalence increased in each country. SBP levels increased slightly in Tunisia and Syria but decreased in OPT and Turkey. Conclusions Recent risk factor trends are worrying. Good quality data on the extent and determinants of NCDs are essential to respond the changing health needs of populations with burgeoning NCD epidemics.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11889/8063
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