International journal of cardiology 2016 Jun 29221() 205-11 doi 10.1016/j.ijcard.2016.06.242
Epidemiology, aetiology, management and outcome data for various forms of pulmonary hypertension (PH) in Africa are scarce.
A prospective, multinational cohort registry of 220 consecutive patients (97% of African descent) from 9 specialist centres in 4 African countries. The antecedents, characteristics and management of newly diagnosed PH plus 6-month survival were studied.
There were 209 adults (median age 48years [IQR 35, 64]) and 11 children (age range 1 to 17years). Most adults had advanced disease – 66% WHO Functional Class III-IV, median 6-minute walk test distance of 252m (IQR 120, 350) and median right ventricular systolic pressure 58mmHg (IQR 49, 74). Adults comprised 16% pulmonary arterial hypertension, 69% PH due to left heart disease, 11% PH due to lung disease and/or hypoxia, 2% chronic thromboembolic pulmonary hypertension, and 2% PH with unclear multifactorial mechanism. At 6-months, 21% of adults with follow-up data had died. On an adjusted basis (independent of sub-groups) mortality was associated with increasing functional impairment (p=0.021 overall – WHO Class IV versus I, OR 1.68 [95% CI 0.13, 4.36]) and presence of combined right atrial and ventricular hypertrophy (46% – OR 2.88, 95% CI 1.45, 5.72). Children commonly presented with dyspnoea, fatigue, cough, and palpitations with six and three children, respectively diagnosed with concurrent PH associated congenital heart disease and left heart disease.
These data provide new insights into PH from an African perspective, with clear opportunities to improve its prevention, treatment and outcomes.