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Oct 24, 2011

Why Is a Good Clinical Prediction Rule So Hard to Find?

Author Affiliations

Author Affiliations: Department of Medicine, University of California, San Francisco (Drs Grady and Berkowitz); San Francisco VA Medical Center (Dr Grady).

Arch Intern Med. 2011;171(19):1701-1702. doi:10.1001/archinternmed.2011.482

Clinical prediction rules (CPRs) (also called clinical decision rules, prediction models, and risk scores) are tools designed to assist clinical decision making. Clinical prediction rules generally provide an estimate of the risk of disease, disease outcome, or the benefit of a diagnostic or therapeutic action.1,2 For example, the well-known Framingham Risk Score3 uses age, sex, total cholesterol level, high-density lipoprotein cholesterol level, smoking status, blood pressure, and use of hypertension medication to estimate the risk of myocardial infarction or coronary death during the next 10 years. Because CPRs are designed to guide clinical care, it is important that they be accurate and reliable.

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