Harvard Heart Letter

New tool refines heart risk prediction

Adding C-reactive protein and family history modernizes and improves the standard risk tool.

When should the tried-and-true make way for something new? That's a question we all face from time to time, whether it has to do with Thanksgiving traditions or new business practices. In cardiology, one of the tried-and-trues is the Framingham risk score. It has been used millions of times to estimate an individual's chances of having a heart attack. Why bother with such a seemingly macabre task? Knowing your risk can help you and your doctor take steps against the prediction coming true without overdoing it.

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