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Comprehensive cardiovascular risk management – what does it mean in practice?

Authors Leif Erhardt, Robert Moller, Juan García Puig

Published 15 November 2007 Volume 2007:3(5) Pages 587—603

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Leif Erhardt1, Robert Moller2, Juan García Puig3

1Department of Cardiology, University of Lund, Malmö University Hospital, Malmö, Sweden; 2Worldwide Medical Cardiovascular-Metabolic Endocrine Group, Pfizer Inc, New York, NY, USA; 3Metabolic and Vascular Risk Unit, Division of Internal Medicine, La Paz University Hospital, Madrid, Spain

Abstract: The continued movement away from the treatment of individual cardiovascular (CV) risk factors to managing overall and lifetime CV risk is likely to have a significant impact on slowing the rate of increase in cardiovascular disease (CVD). However, the management of CVD is currently far from optimal even in parts of the world with well-developed and well-funded healthcare systems. Effective implementation of the knowledge, treatment guidelines, diagnostic tools, therapeutic interventions, and management programs that exist for CVD continues to evade us. A thorough understanding of the multifactorial nature of CVD is essential to its effective management. Improvements continue to be made to management guidelines, risk assessment tools, treatments, and care programs pertaining to CVD. Ultimately, however, preventing the epidemic of CVD will require a combination of both medical and public health approaches. In addition to improvements in the “high-risk” strategy, which forms the basis of current CVD management, an increase in the utilization of population-based management strategies needs to be made to attempt to reduce the number of patients falling within the “at-risk” stratum for CVD. This review outlines how a comprehensive approach to CVD management might be achieved.

Keywords: cardiovascular disease, risk factors, high-risk strategies, public-health management, guidelines, implementation

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