The characteristics and comorbidities of chronic diseases in patients visiting in a major governmental clinic in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
Keywords:Clinical Characteristics, Chronic Diseases, Governmental Family Medicine Clinics, Saudi Arabia.
Background: The objective of the study was to describe the characteristics and comorbidities of chronic diseases in patients visiting a major governmental clinic in Northern Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
Methods: This descriptive cross-sectional study examined 183 patients visiting a major governmental clinic in northern Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. The visits were conducted between December 2019 and January 2020. A predesigned data extraction sheet was used to collect data from electronic medical records for baseline demographics of patients and clinical features of diagnosed diseases.
Results: The mean age of patients was 60.25 years ( SD ±12.3). The mean systolic and diastolic blood pressure was 130.97 mmHg (SD: 12.26) and 68.72 mm Hg(SD: 2.16) respectively. The mean body mass index (BMI) was 31.78 kg/m2 (SD: 6.48). On categorizing BMI values, 104 (59.4%) patients were obese and 55 (32.4%) were overweight. The majority of the patients had dyslipidemia (83.6%). Female patients significantly suffered from arthritis and hypothyroid more than males (34.4% vs 4.7%, p-value <0.001 and 26.7% vs 8.2%, p-value 0.001) respectively. However, other chronic diseases did not show any differences with respect to gender. With respect to age group, hypertension (78.9% vs 21.1%, p value <0.001), dyslipidemia (88.9% vs 11.1%, p value 0.05), diabetes (77.8& vs 22.2, p value 0.05) were significantly higher among individuals from the age group of 60 and older. With respect to comorbidity, the most common comorbidity associated with diabetes was hypertension (71%, p = 0.015), while 87.2% of individuals with dyslipidemia were also diagnosed with diabetes (p = 0.03).
Conclusion: Dyslipidemia was found to be the most frequent chronic condition, followed by diabetes, Hypertension, arthritis and other health conditions (cancer, depression, anxiety, and dementia). Hypertension, dyslipidemia and diabetes were more commonly found in elderly patients (≥60years). Comorbidity was also predominant in our study population. The significant comorbidity of diabetes with both hypertension and dyslipidemia among visitors of primary healthcare settings necessitates the selection of appropriate treatment strategies that aim to control these three conditions together while minimizing the number of adverse effects related to interactions between medications. There is also a need for a greater nation-wide study to extrapolate these findings to Saudi primary healthcare settings.
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