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A simplified scoring system may predict overall CVD risk, individual CVD components risk
Date:1/22/2008

Physicians currently evaluate a patients risk for heart disease, stroke and other cardiovascular diseases (CVD) individually, but a new assessment tool could gauge risk of overall ,or global, CVD and a range of cardiovascular diseases at one time, according to a study published in Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association.

This new index is particularly well suited for use by office-based primary care physicians, who could estimate patients overall CVD risk by using a simple, single scoring system, researchers said.

Applying the new system to 12 years of patient data, researchers found that the scoring index accurately assessed who would have a CVD event (such as stroke or heart attack). The index demonstrated accuracy for men and women for global CVD, and, with minor adjustments to the index, permitted reliable estimation of a persons risks for specific types of CVD.

Individuals with a high overall CVD risk require more aggressive risk factor modification, said Ralph B. DAgostino, Sr., Ph.D., chair and professor of mathematics and statistics at Boston University and co-principal investigator of the Framingham Heart Study. The goal of therapy for cholesterol disorders, diabetes and hypertension should be linked to the global CVD risk.

DAgostino and his colleagues analyzed data on 8,491 participants (average age 49) in the Framingham Heart Study, all of whom were free of CVD at the start of the study. The researchers used standard statistical methods to develop male- and female-specific scoring systems, or algorithms for estimating risk of developing a first CVD. These scoring systems incorporated age, levels of total cholesterol and high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, systolic blood pressure, treatment for high blood pressure, smoking and diabetes status. The researches then evaluated the algorithms ability to estimate overall CVD risk and the scoring systems accuracy for predicting the occurrence of individua
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Contact: Bridgette McNeill
bridgette.mcneill@heart.org
214-706-1135
American Heart Association
Source:Eurekalert

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