The Minister of Health, Isaac Adewole, has urged Nigerians to be wary of hypertension effects and rise up to take action against what he described as a silent killer disease.
The minister said this at the celebration of the 2017 World Hypertension Day, WHD, observed annually on May17 to create awareness about hypertension, its devastating effects and to encourage citizens to prevent and control it.
Mr Adewole, represented by Chris Bode, Chief Medical Director, Lagos University Teaching Hospital, LUTH, Idi-Araba, spoke at an event to mark the day, which was organised by Nestle Nigeria Plc.
WHD was for first inaugurated in May 2005 and the theme for this year’s Day is: “Know Your Numbers’’.
A website, www.mayoclinic.org, said that “high blood pressure is a common condition in which the long-term force of the blood against one’s artery walls is high enough that it may eventually cause health problems, such as heart disease.
“Blood pressure is determined both by the amount of blood your heart pumps and the amount of resistance to blood flow in your arteries.
“The more blood your heart pumps and the narrower your arteries, the higher your blood pressure,’’ it said.
Mr Adewole, a professor, said, “Hypertension has become a modern epidemic and it is silent killer.
“Its prevalence is high in Nigeria and it affects both the old and young, rich and poor.
“May is the month of measurement; let everyone measure their blood pressure and tell others to do so.
“I commend Nestle Nigeria and the Nutrition Society of Nigeria for taking the initiative to address this important topic.’’
In his remarks, Maurico Alarcon, Managing Director of Nestle Nigeria, said that creating awareness about hypertension was part of the company’s purpose to enhance quality of life and contribute to a healthier future.
“Studies have shown that the incidence of hypertension is high, especially in Nigeria.
“There is need to let people know that they have to check themselves and know their status,” Mr Alarcon said.
The Director, Medical Education Development Unit, Christy Okoromah, urged Nigerians to always seek medical prescription before taking any drug.
According to her, some drugs may have side effects on health and cause hypertension.