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Editorial
November 26, 2007

Prediction Is Difficult, Particularly About the Future

Arch Intern Med. 2007;167(21):2286-2287. doi:10.1001/archinte.167.21.2286

There is a substantial evidence base justifying why physicians (and patients) should manage cardiovascular risk rather than cardiovascular risk factors.1 The distinction is far more than a subtle difference in wording; cardiovascular risk factors are individually poor predictors of a patient's risk of a cardiovascular event, the only outcome that matters to patients. For most patients, their actual blood cholesterol level or blood pressure becomes clinically meaningful only when considered in combination with other risk factors and when the cardiovascular risk is calculated.2

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