Childhood hypertension is becoming more common in the general paediatric population, with a new study showing the overall prevalence of childhood hypertension as 4 per cent, while the prevalence of pre-hypertension is nearly 10 per cent.
For the study, researchers undertook a systematic review and meta-analysis of 47 articles to assess the prevalence of hypertension in the general paediatric population.
The researchers identified a trend of increasing prevalence of childhood hypertension during the past two decades, with a relative increasing rate of 75 per cent to 79 per cent from 2000 to 2015 among young people aged between six and 19 years.
They reported that in 2015, the prevalence of childhood hypertension ranged from 4.32 per cent among children aged six years to 3.28 per cent among those aged 19 years. This figure peaked at 7.89 per cent among those aged 14 years.
Children who were overweight and obese were more likely to have hypertension than those who were underweight or of normal weight.
The authors noted the prevalence of hypertension varied significantly when measured by different devices, with prevalence higher when measured by aneroid sphygmomanometer (7.23%) versus mercury sphygmomanometer (4.59%) or oscillometric sphygmomanometer (2.94%).
The findings are published in JAMA Pediatrics.