Hypertension in childhood and adolescence is associated with adult cardiovascular morbidity and mortality. However, the reported prevalence of pediatric hypertension varies considerably. We conducted a pioneer nationwide population-based study to investigate the prevalence of hypertension among children and adolescents. Pediatric patients who had been diagnosed with hypertension between 2000 and 2013 were selected from the National Health Insurance Research Database in Taiwan. Other metabolic syndrome-related diseases that would increase cardiovascular risk, including diabetes mellitus (DM), hyperlipidemia, and obesity, were also retrieved for further evaluation. In total, 10,364 children and adolescents diagnosed with hypertension were identified. The prevalence of pediatric hypertension in Taiwan ranged from 0.19 to 0.38 per 1000 children and adolescents between 2000 and 2013. Essential hypertension was most commonly coded (90.6%), which was much more than secondary hypertension (14.3%). Children and adolescents with hypertension were often associated with DM, hyperlipidemia, and obesity, with the odds ratios as 14.05 (95% confidence interval (CI) 11.74–16.81, p < 0.001), 10.65 (95% CI 9.48–11.97, p < 0.001), and 19.08 (95% CI 15.65–23.26, p < 0.001), respectively. To improve lifelong cardiovascular health, our results emphasize the importance of early proper recognition and suitable management of hypertension, as well as metabolic syndrome-related diseases, among children and adolescents.
ASJC Scopus subject areas