Assessing the ability of cardiovascular disease risk calculators to evaluate effectiveness of trials and interventions
Many cardiovascular disease risk calculators are available to evaluate clinical trials and lifestyle interventions aimed at reducing cardiovascular disease risk. We build upon previous research on differences across existing calculators by describing 11 cardiovascular disease risk calculators and conducting simulations assessing their differences in the ability to detect changes in risk resulting from changes in input risk factors. Our results indicate that the ability to show statistically significant reductions in cardiovascular disease risk in a clinical trial or intervention may depend as much on the choice of the calculator as on the effectiveness of the intervention. Evaluators should consider this factor, along with other previously presented selection criteria, when identifying the appropriate calculator for evaluations.