The influence of family history of hypertension on disease prevalence and associated metabolic risk factors among Sri Lankan adults

Ranasinghe, Priyanga, Cooray, Dilini N., Jayawardena, Ranil, & Katulanda, Prasad (2015) The influence of family history of hypertension on disease prevalence and associated metabolic risk factors among Sri Lankan adults. BMC Public Health, 15(576).

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Hypertension is a major contributor to the global non-communicable disease burden. Family history is an important non-modifiable risk factor for hypertension. The present study aims to describe the influence of family history (FH) on hypertension prevalence and associated metabolic risk factors in a large cohort of South Asian adults, from a nationally representative sample from Sri Lanka.


A cross-sectional survey among 5,000 Sri Lankan adults, evaluating FH at the levels of parents, grandparents, siblings and children. A binary logistic regression analysis was performed in all patients with ‘presence of hypertension’ as dichotomous dependent variable and using family history in parents, grandparents, siblings and children as binary independent variables. The adjusted odds ratio controlling for confounders (age, gender, body mass index, diabetes, hyperlipidemia and physical activity) are presented below.


In all adults the prevalence of hypertension was significantly higher in patients with a FH (29.3 %, n = 572/1951) than those without (24.4 %, n = 616/2530) (p < 0.001). Presence of a FH significantly increased the risk of hypertension (OR:1.29; 95 % CI:1.13-1.47), obesity (OR:1.36; 95 % CI: 1.27–1.45), central obesity (OR:1.30; 95 % CI 1.22–1.40) and metabolic syndrome (OR:1.19; 95 % CI: 1.08–1.30). In all adults presence of family history in parents (OR:1.28; 95 % CI: 1.12–1.48), grandparents (OR:1.34; 95 % CI: 1.20–1.50) and siblings (OR:1.27; 95 % CI: 1.21–1.33) all were associated with significantly increased risk of developing hypertension.


Our results show that the prevalence of hypertension was significantly higher in those with a FH of hypertension. FH of hypertension was also associated with the prevalence of obesity, central obesity and metabolic syndrome. Individuals with a FH of hypertension form an easily identifiable group who may benefit from targeted interventions.

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ID Code: 85098
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: Family history, Hypertension, Prevalence, Adults, Sri Lanka
DOI: 10.1186/s12889-015-1927-7
ISSN: 1471-2458
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2015 Ranasinghe et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.
Copyright Statement: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Deposited On: 02 Jul 2015 23:01
Last Modified: 19 Jul 2015 23:03

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