WCPT Africa Region Conference System, 9th WCPT Africa Region Congress

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Physical Activity Level and Pattern of Blood Pressure and Hypertension in Nigerian Postmenopausal Women.
Omoyemi Olubunmi Ogwumike

Last modified: 2012-02-09


Introduction: In menopausal women, hormonal changes around menopause have been attributed to hypertension – a public health concern in Nigeria and a major risk factor for coronary heart disease. There’s a dearth of studies investigating influence of physical activity level on blood pressure pattern of Nigerian menopausal women.

Objective/Aims: This study investigated pattern of blood pressure in postmenopausal women attending the Hypertension Clinic in the Medical Outpatient Department of a tertiary health facility in Ibadan, Oyo State, Nigeria. It also examined possible relationship between physical activity level, blood pressure and adiposity variables [Body Mass Index (BMI) and Waist-hip Ratio (WHR)] in the menopausal women.

Methods:  A purposive sampling technique was used to recruit 220 participants in this cross-sectional survey study after obtaining their informed consent. International Physical Activity Questionnaire (IPAQ) was used for assessment of physical activity level while a 16-item questionnaire was used to document socio-demographic and clinical profiles of the women. BMI and WHR were assessed using standard measurement procedures. Descriptive statistics and independent t- tests were used in data analysis.

Results: Participants’ mean age was 61.6 ± 8.5 years (95% C.I = 60.42- 62.68), last menstrual period was 12.75 ± 8.15 while mean BMI and WHR were 28.63 ± 4.99kg/m2 and 1.11 ± 0.08 respectively. The mean Systolic Blood Pressures (SBP) and Diastolic Blood Pressures (DBP) were 145.87 ± 17.87 and 93.66 ± 11.4 respectively. Majority were married (67.3%), self-employed (59.5%) and of the middle income category (50.5%). The pattern of blood pressure was - normal: 3.2%, high normal: 10.9% while 35%, 36.8% and 14% of the participants belonged to mild, moderate and severe categories of hypertension respectively. Participants (37.7%) and (58.6%) reported low and moderate physical activity levels respectively. Those who reported low physical activity level were significantly older (p<0.05) and had higher values of SBP, DBP, BMI and WHR than those who reported moderate and higher physical activity levels, although the differences were not statistically significant (P> 0.05). 

Conclusion: Most of the postmenopausal women in this study reported low to moderate physical activity level and more than three - quarters of them were hypertensive with high adiposity variables. Efforts by physiotherapists are implicated towards improvement of physical activity level in postmenopausal women in order to improve their blood pressure pattern and adiposity variables.


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