What is the Framingham Risk Score?
The Framingham Risk Score came about as a result of one of the most extensive and long-running research endeavours into heart disease and its causes, the Framingham Heart Study.
Numerous factors are part of the study. First, there are a number of general categories that are studied such as the risk for Congestive Heart Failure, Atrial Fibrillation , Stroke and General Cardiovascular Disease. Each of these categories are followed closely in the 3 different generations of study participants. Data and information are gathered and a point total is assessed based on how far from the norm a patient may be.
As an example, General Cardiovascular Disease uses the following factors to calculate the Framingham risk score for a person – Age, Diabetes, Smoking, Treated and Untreated Systolic Blood Pressure, HDL Cholesterol and BMI (Body Mass Index). Looking at a 50 year old male that smokes a pack of cigarettes a day and has an average blood pressure of 150/90 etc., might yield 3 points because of the smoking, and a point for having moderately high Blood Pressure. Factor in the other negative categories that may be out of the normal range and you get a Framingham Risk Score. The higher the score, the greater the risk a person has of developing these cardiovascular events.
Easy formulas to calculate the Framingham Risk Score for a person have been established and doctors can simply plug in the relevant data to get a good picture of the future likelihood of one developing heart related problems. It has been more than 60 years since the study first began and relevant data and information is still being gathered to help in the battle against cardiovascular disease.