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Ann Afr Med. 2019 Jul-Sep;18(3):143-152. doi: 10.4103/aam.aam_53_18.

Hyperhomocysteinemia and folate levels in normal healthy Nigerians living in Zaria: Subanalysis of ABU homocysteine cross-sectional survey.

Author information

1
Department of Medicine, Ahmadu Bello University Teaching Hospital; Department of Pharmacology and Therapeutics, Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, Nigeria.
2
Department of Pharmacology and Therapeutics, Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, Nigeria.

Abstract

in English, French

Background:

This study aimed to determine the prevalence of hyperhomocysteinemia and folate status in a sample of normal healthy Nigerians living in Zaria as well as assess the relationship between homocysteine, folate, and blood pressure (BP) levels.

Methods:

It was a cross-sectional analytical study carried out among 65 normal healthy volunteers aged 18-65 years. Participants were randomly selected from willing patient escorts, hospital employees, and willing staff presenting at the Ahmadu Bello University Medical Centre, Zaria and Ahmadu Bello University Teaching Hospital, Zaria, Nigeria. The percentage of participants who had high homocysteine levels as well as their plasma folate status was determined.

Results:

There were 9.2% with hyperhomocysteinemia >15 μmol/L and 51% with hyperhomocysteinemia >10 μmol/L. The mean plasma homocysteine level was 10.8 ± 2.7 μmol/L with male and female values of 10.7 ± 2.6 and 10.8 ± 2.8, respectively (P = 0.87). The mean plasma folate level was high (116.7 ± 44.0 ng/mL) with male value of (111.5 ± 44.9 ng/mL) which did not differ significantly (P = 0.37) from that of females (121.4 ± 43.3 ng/mL). Homocysteine showed a positive significant (P = 0.01) relationship with folate but not with BP's (P > 0.05).

Conclusion:

There is a high prevalence of hyperhomocysteinemia in normal healthy Northern-Nigerians which cannot be accounted for by suboptimal folate levels. Hyperhomocysteinemia may not be a risk factor for cardiovascular disease in normal healthy Nigerians despite its high levels as it showed no significant relationship with BP.

KEYWORDS:

Blood pressure; folate; hyperhomocysteinemia; normal healthy Nigerians

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