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Epidemiology of stroke and high blood pressure in Africa
  1. George A Mensah (gmensah{at}
  1. National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Atlanta, Georgia, United States


    Introduction Stroke and hypertension are major causes of death and disability worldwide. Although comprehensive stroke surveillance data for Africa are lacking, the available data show that age-standardized mortality, case fatality, and prevalence of disabling stroke in Africa are similar to or higher than those measures in most high-income regions. In Africa, more than 90% of patients with hemorrhagic stroke and more than half with ischemic stroke are found to have hypertension. However, awareness of hypertension and its prevention, treatment, and control remain very low in Africa even though most recent surveys show an increasing prevalence of the disease consistent with the epidemiologic transition in the region. Renewed emphasis on improved surveillance and the prevention and control of hypertension and stroke in Africa is needed.

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