News tagged with risk factors

Related topics: heart disease · patients · women · heart attack · cardiovascular disease

Female smokers face greatest risk for brain bleeds

Bleeding inside the lining of the brain (subarachnoid hemorrhage) is significantly more common among smokers, especially female smokers, than among people who do not smoke, according to new research in the American Heart ...

Jul 21, 2016
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Global study shows stroke largely preventable

Ten risk factors that can be modified are responsible for nine of 10 strokes worldwide, but the ranking of those factors vary regionally, says a study led by researchers of the Population Health Research Institute (PHRI) ...

Jul 15, 2016
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Data shows people must move more, sit less

Australians must move more and sit less with the latest Heart Foundation report providing further evidence that the prevalence of cardiovascular disease risk factors is lower among Australian who meet physical activity recommendations.

Jul 14, 2016
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Risk factor

A risk factor is a variable associated with an increased risk of disease or infection. Risk factors are correlational and not necessarily causal, because correlation does not imply causation. For example, being young cannot be said to cause measles, but young people are more at risk as they are less likely to have developed immunity during a previous epidemic.

Risk factors are evaluated by comparing the risk of those exposed to the potential risk factor to those not exposed. Let's say that at a wedding, 74 people ate the chicken and 22 of them were ill, while of the 35 people who had the fish or vegetarian meal only 2 were ill. Did the chicken make the people ill?

So the chicken eaters' risk = 22/74 = 0.297 And non-chicken eaters' risk = 2/35 = 0.057.

Those who ate the chicken had a risk over five times as high as those who did not, suggesting that eating chicken was the cause of the illness. Note, however, that this is not proof. Statistical methods would be used in a less clear cut case to decide what level of risk the risk factor would have to present to be able to say the risk factor is linked to the disease (for example in a study of the link between smoking and lung cancer). Even then, no amount of statistical analysis could prove that the risk factor causes the disease; this could only be proven using direct methods such as a medical explanation of the disease's roots.

The earliest use of risk factor analysis dates back to Avicenna's The Canon of Medicine (1020s), though the term "risk factor" was first coined by heart researcher Dr. Thomas R. Dawber in a landmark scientific paper in 1961, where he attributed heart disease to specific conditions (blood pressure, cholesterol, smoking).

This text uses material from Wikipedia, licensed under CC BY-SA

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