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Computerized history-taking as a tool to manage dyslipidemia

Authors Zakim D, Fritz C, Braun N, Fritz P, Alscher MD 

Published 12 November 2010 Volume 2010:6 Pages 1039—1046


Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 5

David Zakim1, Christine Fritz2, Niko Braun1,3, Peter Fritz1, M Dominik Alscher1,3
1Institute for Digital Medicine, Stuttgart, Germany; 2University of Ulm, Ulm, Germany; 3Robert Bosch Krankenhaus, Stuttgart, Germany

Background: Validated guidelines to manage low-density lipoprotein (LDL)-cholesterol are utilized inconsistently or not at all even though their application lowers the incidence of coronary events. New approaches are needed, therefore, to implement these guidelines in everyday practice.
Methods and results: We compared an automated method for applying The National Cholesterol Education Panel (NCEP) guidelines with results from routine care for managing LDL-cholesterol. The automated method comprised computerized history-taking and analysis of historical data without physician input. Results from routine care were determined for 213 unselected patients and compared with results from interviews of the same 213 patients by a computerized history-taking program. Data extracted from hospital charts showed that routine care typically did not collect sufficient information to stratify risk and assign treatment targets for LDL-cholesterol and that there were inconsistencies in identifying patients with normal or elevated levels of LDL-cholesterol in relation to risk. The computerized interview program outperformed routine care in collecting historical data relevant to stratifying risk, assigning treatment targets, and clarifying the presence of hypercholesterolemia relative to risk.
Conclusions: Computerized history-taking coupled with automated analysis of the clinical data can outperform routine medical care in applying NCEP guidelines for stratifying risk and identifying patients with hypercholesterolemia in relation to risk.

Keywords: dyslipidemia, coronary disease, prevention, management, computerized-history taking

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