Article Text

Blood pressure, cholesterol and cardiovascular disease in Thailand
  1. Panrasri Khonputsa1,2,
  2. J Lennert Veerman2,
  3. Prin Vathesatogkit3,
  4. Somlax Vanavanan3,
  5. Stephen Lim1,4,
  6. Melanie Bertram1,2,
  7. Theo Vos1,2,
  8. Wipa Ratanachaiwong5,
  9. Sukit Yamwong3
  1. 1The Setting Priorities using Information on Cost-Effectiveness Project, Ministry of Public Health, Nonthaburi Thailand
  2. 2The University of Queensland, School of Population Health, Brisbane, QLD Australia
  3. 3Faculty of Medicine, Ramathibodi Hospital, Mahidol University, Bangkok, Thailand
  4. 4Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation, University of Washington, Seattle, WA USA
  5. 5Medical and Health Office, Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand, Nonthaburi, Thailand
  1. Correspondence to Dr Sukit Yamwong, Faculty of Medicine, Ramathibodi Hospital, Mahidol University, 270 Rama VI Road, Rajdevi, Bangkok 10400, Thailand; rasyw{at}


Background Although associations between risk factors such as hypertension and hypercholesterolaemia, and cardiovascular disease (CVD) are well-established it is not known to what extent these associations are similar in people from different ethnicities or regions. This study aims to measure the contributions of systolic blood pressure (SBP) and total cholesterol (TC) to ischaemic heart disease (IHD) and stroke in the Thai population.

Methods and results Data from a Thai cohort study were used for analyses. Participants were 2702 males and 797 females aged between 35 and 54 years at the start of study in 1985. Cox Proportional Hazards Models were used to assess RRs of IHD or stroke associated with SBP or TC stratified by age at the time of an event of 30–44, 45–59, and 60–69 years. During the 17 years of follow-up, 96 IHD (40 non-fatal, 56 fatal), 69 strokes (32 non-fatal and 37 fatal) occurred. Each 1 mmol/l increase in TC was associated with a fivefold increase in IHD risk in people aged 30–44 years, but not with significant increase in stroke risk in any age group. The RRs (95% CIs) of IHD per 10 mm Hg increase in SBP were 1.31 (1.04 to 1.64) and 1.46 (1.15 to 1.87), and of stroke, 1.40 (1.10 to 1.79) and 1.85 (1.40 to 2.45) in people aged 45–59 and 60–69 years, respectively.

Conclusions Increases in IHD and stroke risks associated with these two risk factors observed in Thailand are comparable with those in the Asia Pacific and western populations.

  • Blood pressure
  • cholesterol
  • ischaemic heart disease
  • stroke
  • cardiovascular disease

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  • Funding Data analysis was conducted by the Setting Priorities Using Information on Cost-Effectiveness (SPICE) Project which is funded by Wellcome Trust, UK (071842/Z/03/Z) and the National Health and Medical Research Council of Australia (301199).

  • Competing interests None.

  • Ethics approval Ethics approval was provided by the Mahidol University of Thailand.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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