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Journal of Environmental and Public Health
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 680631, 10 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2013/680631
Research Article

Prevalence of High Blood Pressure, Heart Disease, Thalassemia, Sickle-Cell Anemia, and Iron-Deficiency Anemia among the UAE Adolescent Population

University of Toronto Scarborough, 1265 Military Trail, Toronto, ON, Canada M1C 1A4

Received 31 July 2012; Revised 12 January 2013; Accepted 25 February 2013

Academic Editor: Pauline E. Jolly

Copyright © 2013 Caroline Barakat-Haddad. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

This study examined the prevalence of high blood pressure, heart disease, and medical diagnoses in relation to blood disorders, among 6,329 adolescent students (age 15 to 18 years) who reside in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Findings indicated that the overall prevalence of high blood pressure and heart disease was 1.8% and 1.3%, respectively. Overall, the prevalence for thalassemia, sickle-cell anemia, and iron-deficiency anemia was 0.9%, 1.6%, and 5%, respectively. Bivariate analysis revealed statistically significant differences in the prevalence of high blood pressure among the local and expatriate adolescent population in the Emirate of Sharjah. Similarly, statistically significant differences in the prevalence of iron-deficiency anemia were observed among the local and expatriate population in Abu Dhabi city, the western region of Abu Dhabi, and Al-Ain. Multivariate analysis revealed the following significant predictors of high blood pressure: residing in proximity to industry, nonconventional substance abuse, and age when smoking or exposure to smoking began. Ethnicity was a significant predictor of heart disease, thalassemia, sickle-cell anemia, and iron-deficiency anemia. In addition, predictors of thalassemia included gender (female) and participating in physical activity. Participants diagnosed with sickle-cell anemia and iron-deficiency anemia were more likely to experience different physical activities.