How to explain CVD risk and get patients to act

Big numbers impress, regardless of the timescale

Patients often misunderstand their own odds of experiencing heart disease and its potential consequences, and that means doctors may need to rethink how they explain risk, a new study suggests.

Researchers found that patients were more worried about heart disease and more willing to take preventive medications when told about their long-term, rather than short-term, chances of having problems like heart attack or stroke.

That's most likely because the long-term risk generally is a larger numeral, the study team writes in JAMA Cardiology.

So, for