Got a Healthy Heart? Maybe Not

Think your risk is low for heart disease?  You may want to think again.   The latest research warns that about half of those who've been told their risk is low actually are at high risk of developing heart disease sometime in their lives.

The problem, according to a study in the Jan. 19 issue of "Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association," is the standard way that doctors determine your short-term risk of getting heart disease.   The short-term risk, over 10 years, apparently gives a false sense of security for half the population under 50 years of age.  When their long-term lifetime risk was analyzed,  scientists discovered that they should be put into a high-risk category.

The study shows that heart doctors should use both the short-term and lifetime risk estimates when counseling their younger patients, researchers said.

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