Obesity is associated with diverse morbidities, and elevated blood pressure has been suggested to be associated with increased body weight. This study therefore aimed to determine the relationship between obesity and elevated blood pressure among adolescent. This is a cross-sectional study. Consenting adolescents aged 10 to 18 years completed a pretested semi-structured questionnaire. Anthropometric parameters and blood pressure were measured using standard methods. Data were analysed using descriptive and inferential statistics. A total of 1000 adolescents were recruited with male to female ratio of 1:1. The mean age was 14.05±1.98 years. Early adolescence was predominant (43.3%). The prevalence of obesity was 1.3% while overweight was 4.1%. There was female preponderance for both overweight (53.7%) and obesity (53.8%). Sixty–nine (6.9%) had systolic hypertension while 50 (5.0%) had diastolic hypertension. Three (23.1%) obese and four (9.8%) overweight adolescents had statistically significant elevated systolic blood pressure in the hypertensive range (χ2 = 11.306, p = 0.015). One (7.7%) obese and four (9.8%) overweight subjects had statistically significant elevated diastolic blood pressure (χ2 = 9.803, p = 0.029). Routine screening for elevated blood pressure in schools is highly recommended among school-aged adolescents especially the obese and overweight.
Key words: Adolescents, blood pressure, Nigeria, obesity, overweight.
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