Valvoja: Leino Utriainen
This week, after they saw the guidelines and the calculator, Dr. Ridker and Dr. Cook evaluated it using three large studies that involved thousands of people and continued for at least a decade. They knew the subjects’ characteristics at the start — their ages, whether they smoked, their cholesterol levels, their blood pressures. Then they asked how many had heart attacks or strokes in the next 10 years and how many would the risk calculator predict. The answer was that the calculator overpredicted risk by 75 to 150 percent, depending on the population.
So as I was chuckling to myself about a couple of the scenes in Idiocracy, it occurred to me: How much more valuable would I be if my fellow programmers all started taking statins and became a bit stupid? Give them a few years on a high dose of Lipitor, and I daresay I could triple my billing rate. I’d be the only one remaining with enough cognitive ability to tackle the really tough assignments.
Under the new guidelines, more than 30 percent of U.S. adults may qualify for statin treatment,
says Dr. Donald Lloyd-Jones, also at Northwestern, who co-chaired the panel. ”It’s about twice as many
adults who will be eligible for ‘definite treat’ status,” he said.
“We were not concerned with treating more or less people. We were concerned with treating
the people who would benefit most,” Stone added.
These include people who already have heart diseases, people whose LDL is 190 or higher,
people with type-2 diabetes who are aged 40 to 75, and others with a calculated high risk of heart
“Whereas in the old guidelines, all diabetics would be treated, this review of the evidence
reveals some younger diabetics might not need statins,” Stone said.
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