This study determined the knowledge, attitude and practice/behaviour of cardiovascular health in residents of a semiurban community of Nepal.
To increase the understanding of knowledge, attitude and practice/behaviour towards cardiovascular health, we conducted in-home interviews using a questionnaire based on the WHO STEPwise approach to surveillance and other resources, scoring all responses. We also recorded blood pressure and took anthropometric measurements.
Our study was conducted as part of the Heart-Health-Associated Research and Dissemination in the Community project in the Jhaukhel-Duwakot Health Demographic Surveillance Site in two urbanising villages near Kathmandu.
The study population included 777 respondents from six randomly selected clusters in both villages.
Seventy per cent of all participants were women and 26.9% lacked formal education. The burden of cardiovascular risk factors was high; 20.1% were current smokers, 43.3% exhibited low physical activity and 21.6% were hypertensive. Participants showed only poor knowledge of heart disease causes; 29.7% identified hypertension and 11% identified overweight and physical activity as causes, whereas only 2.2% identified high blood sugar as causative. Around 60% of respondents did not know any heart attack symptoms compared with 20% who knew 2–4 symptoms. Median percentage scores for knowledge, attitude and practice/behaviour were 79.3, 74.3 and 48, respectively. Nearly 44% of respondents had insufficient knowledge and less than 20% had highly satisfactory knowledge. Among those with highly satisfactory knowledge, only 14.7% had a highly satisfactory attitude and 19.5% and 13.9% had satisfactory and highly satisfactory practices, respectively.
Our study demonstrates a gap between cardiovascular health knowledge, attitude and practice/behaviour in a semiurban community in a low-income nation, even among those already affected by cardiovascular disease.