A Consultant Cardiologist, Dr. Bode Adejumo, has raised concerns that many Nigerian young adults in their 30s were being diagnosed with hypertension.
Adejumo, who works with the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital (LASUTH), made this known on Thursday in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos.
He also decried the rate of sudden deaths among young adults in Nigeria.
According to him, the death of most young Nigerians can be linked to heart-related challenges caused by undetected and unmanaged hypertension.
Adejumo, who described hypertension as a silent killer, said that it was now common among young people unlike before when majorly old people of 40 years and above were hypertensive.
He said, “There have been instances of young Nigerians dying with heart-related diseases.
“In my earlier years of practice, high blood pressure is mostly an issue of the mature and old folk starting from 40, but now we see 28 to 35- year-old hypertensive patients.”
The cardiologist attributed the development to what he called “young life mentality syndrome” and lack of preventive measures among the younger people.
He also said that lack of proper information and education about the disease were other contributing factors.
“The first issue with the younger generation is the false and unwise belief that they are young and thus, do not need to regularly check themselves.
“The second is the fact that they are not taking preventive measures and, of course, the lack of public information and sensitisation on the dangers associated with hypertension as well as low blood pressure,” he said.
He advised Nigerians to imbibe the culture of going for medical checkups from the age of 28 as absence of symptoms does not mean there was none.
“We have had some cases of young men dying of cardiac arrest during a tennis match, while jogging, and even as they went to bed.
“This could have been prevented if they knew they had heart problems. When you do a comprehensive health assessment, abnormalities in the body may be detected and corrected,” he said.
Adejumo recommended that individuals should reduce their salt and alcohol intake and avoid stress to reduce the risk of developing heart/cardiovascular diseases.He noted that since high blood pressure could also be hereditary, those with a family history of the condition should be more watchful of their lifestyles while also maintaining a relationship with their cardiologists.