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A risk factor is a demographic characteristic associated with an increased risk of ischaemic heart disease when other variables have been controlled. The presence of a risk factor in an individual increases his or her relative risk of a coronary event (angina, infarction or death). The absolute risk of a coronary event depends on the individual’s total number of risk factors and theirseverity (total risk). Important coronary risk factors are shown in Table 1.1. Risk assessment charts have been developed to estimate a patient’s cardiac risk over a number of years using easily identified risk factors. There are charts for different populations. The charts can be used to predict cardiovascular events or mortality (as in the NHF chart in Fig 1.1 on p. 4) or cardiac risk (systematic coronary risk evaluation system or SCORE charts). These charts can be very helpful in deciding when intervention to reduce risk is warranted; for example, when anti-hypertensive treatment should be commenced for a patient with mild blood pressure elevation. Risk factor reduction involves assessing the presence, severity and importance of risk factors for a
THE BEST CARDIOLOGISTS IN YELAHANKA nvestigations of possible or probable stable angina Electrocardiography A standard 12-lead ECG should be obtained in all patients. This is likely to be normal in almost half of patients with subsequently proven coronary artery disease. Nevertheless, an abnormal trace lends weight to the symptoms and favours further investigation. Chest X-ray Routine radiology is not essential but may reveal important co-morbidities. It should always be performed in those with clinical evidence of hypertension, pericarditis (p. 174), heart failure or valvular disease, if only as a baseline. It is similarly indicated for patients with suspected or known pulmonary or systemic disease such as rheumatoid arthritis, COPD or alcoholism. Routine blood tests All patients with suspected angina should have the following routine investigations at presentation (NHF grade A recommendation): n fasting lipids, including total cholesterol, LDLs, HDLs and triglycerides—risk factors n fasting blood sugar—risk factor n full blood count—anaemia exacerbates angina n serum creatinine—impaired renal function is a risk factor and can be worsened by some cardiac investigations. If indicated clinically, thyroid function
Important coronary risk factors 1 Existing vascular disease (coronary, cerebral or peripheral) 2 Age 3 Dyslipidaemia 4 Smoking 5 Family history 6 Hypertension 7 Male sex/hormonal factors 8 Diabetes 9 Renal impairment 10 Obesity 11 Inactivity 12 Thrombogenic factors 13 Other dietary factors 14 Homocystinaemia 15 Psychological factors 16 Elevated hsCRP 17 Abnormal CT calcium score/coronary angiogram 18 Left ventricular hypertrophy (hypertensive patients) 19 Abnormal
heart doctors in Sahakara Nagar, Bangalore • A clinical approach to hypertension The aims of assessing the hypertensive patient are to: n assess the severity of hypertension n identify any secondary causes n identify aggravating factors n identify target organ damage n assess and manage coexisting CVD risk factors n identify factors affecting the choice of treatment n establish baseline clinical and laboratory data
PAPULAR CARDIOL0GISTS IN BANGALORE A clinical approach to hypertension The aims of assessing the hypertensive patient are to: assess the severity of hypertension identify any secondary causes identify aggravating factors identify target organ damage assess and manage coexisting CVD risk factors identify factors affecting the choice of treatment establish baseline clinical and laboratory data.
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