Thursday, July 12, 2018

Nepal Update: Hyper-compassionate Care for Hypertension

Curious villagers wait in line as our volunteer, Sangeeta, checks blood pressure in a small village in southern Nepal.

Volunteers for HealthEd Connect provide an essential "connection"  between villagers and the medical professionals at hospitals and clinics. Our community health workers are provided with a blood pressure cuff along with the training needed to identify high blood pressure (hypertension) and to assist people in getting medical help before serious problems ensue. Without their caring concern and assistance, many cases would go undiagnosed and untreated. 


Studies show that the prevalence of high blood pressure in urban areas like Kathmandu has tripled in the past thirty years! Many studies suggest that this escalation is due to the changes in lifestyle brought about by global interrelations, which has increased the availability of cigarettes and alcohol and increased salt intake. Furthermore, lack of physical activity created by the congested and highly dense population in the city contributes to this dangerous health issue. Interestingly, some studies show that the most remote, high altitude villages of Nepal show decreased likelihood of high blood pressure. Perhaps there are some health benefits to daily trekking up a mountainside to get home!

Binu, an urban volunteer in Kathmandu, tenderly checks blood pressure at a recent women's health group.



Raja Ram Dhungana, Achyut Raj Pandey, Bihungum Bista, Suira Joshi, and Surya Devkota, "Prevalence and Associated Factors of Hypertension: A Community-Based Cross-Sectional Study in Municipalities of Kathmandu, Nepal," International Journal of Hypertension, vol. 2016. 


Vaidya A, Pathak RP, Pandey MR. Prevalence of hypertension in Nepalese community triples in 25 years: a repeat cross-sectional study in rural Kathmandu. Indian Heart Journal. 2012;64(2):128-131.


Living at High Altitudes is Associated with Decrease in Blood Pressure

Neupane Dinesh; Pradhan, Kiran Shrestha; McLachlan, Craig S; Stock, Christiane; Kallestrup, 

Journal of Hypertension: September 2016. 

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