There are now well-recognised guidelines which state that when reducing someone’s risk of cardiovascular disease the decision to start medication depends on the patient’s absolute risk of coronary heart disease, as opposed to their relative risk, which should be determined using multiple risk factors.
More than 29 cardiovascular risk tools are available to calculate a patient’s absolute risk of cardiovascular disease. Choosing which risk tool to use can be difficult. This article gives a description of the differences between cardiovascular risk tools. It also discusses some of the problems and benefits of risk tools in general and examines the differences between absolute and relative risk.
For UK healthcare professionals only