Backlund, L., Bring, J., and Strender, L., (2006). How accurately do general practitioners and students estimate coronary risk in hypercholesterolaemic patients Primary Health Care Research and Development (2004), 5:2:145-152
Both GPs and students underestimated coronary risk, especially for high-risk patients.
It was concluded that GPs and medical students need help to differentiate more accurately between patients at high and low coronary risk, and greater effort should be made to communicate the advantages and difficulties involved in multiple risk assessment.
Two hundred randomly selected Swedish GPs and 73 medical students in their final year of medical school were asked to estimate coronary risk for 10 written case descriptions with different cholesterol levels (at least 5.5 mmol/l) and combinations of other risk factors. Both primary and secondary prevention cases were represented.
The risk estimation is often done on an intuitive basis without reference to tables or computer programmes, despite having clear guidelines. The requirements for decision support are discussed. More evidence is needed on the validity of the Framingham equation for new population samples.
Tobacco smoking remains a key topic in nursing research, as well as a critically important occupational-health issue for the entire nursing profession. In order to make the next generation of tobacco research data as comparable as possible, future scholars should consider devising and implementing a standardised format for conducting international tobacco smoking research within the nursing profession.
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