Stepped-wedge cluster-randomised controlled trial to assess the cardiovascular health effects of a managed aquifer recharge initiative to reduce drinking water salinity in southwest coastal Bangladesh: Study design and rationale

Academic Article

Abstract

  • Introduction Saltwater intrusion and salinisation have contributed to drinking water scarcity in many coastal regions globally, leading to dependence on alternative sources for water supply. In southwest coastal Bangladesh, communities have few options but to drink brackish groundwater which has been associated with high blood pressure among the adult population, and pre-eclampsia and gestational hypertension among pregnant women. Managed aquifer recharge (MAR), the purposeful recharge of surface water or rainwater to aquifers to bring hydrological equilibrium, is a potential solution for salinity problem in southwest coastal Bangladesh by creating a freshwater lens within the brackish aquifer. Our study aims to evaluate whether consumption of MAR water improves human health, particularly by reducing blood pressure among communities in coastal Bangladesh. Methods and analysis The study employs a stepped-wedge cluster-randomised controlled community trial design in 16 communities over five monthly visits. During each visit, we will collect data on participants' source of drinking and cooking water and measure the salinity level and electrical conductivity of household stored water. At each visit, we will also measure the blood pressure of participants ≥20 years of age and pregnant women and collect urine samples for urinary sodium and protein measurements. We will use generalised linear mixed models to determine the association of access to MAR water on blood pressure of the participants. Ethics and dissemination The study protocol has been reviewed and approved by the Institutional Review Boards of the International Centre for Diarrheal Disease Research, Bangladesh (icddr,b). Informed written consent will be taken from all the participants. This study is funded by Wellcome Trust, UK. The study findings will be disseminated to the government partners, at research conferences and in peer-reviewed journals. Trial registration number NCT02746003; Pre-results.
  • Authors

    Published In

  • BMJ Open  Journal
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Naser AM; Unicomb L; Doza S; Ahmed KM; Rahman M; Uddin MN; Quraishi SB; Selim S; Shamsudduha M; Burgess W
  • Volume

  • 7
  • Issue

  • 9