New risk calculator could change the aspirin, statins, and blood pressure medications some people take

One doctor thought the current risk calculator for heart attack and stroke didn't fit his African-American patients, so he made a new one.
Source: APStock

More than 11 million people may need to reconsider taking medications to avoid heart attack and stroke, according to new research that says current guidelines overestimate risk for some people, but underestimate risk for others, especially African-Americans.

Right now, doctors can consult a calculator found online or in electronic health records to decide whether patients might benefit from aspirin, statins, or blood pressure medications. Those estimates of 10-year risk for cardiovascular disease were derived in 2013 and endorsed by the American College of Cardiology and the American Heart Association. They were based on statistical analyses that combined data from large studies such as the original Framingham Heart Study, whose

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