I am puzzled by the statement that the 10 years risk of a cardiac event is 10%, 20%. Does it mean that of 100 patients who have the equivalent risk factors, 10 or 20 of them will have a cardiac event?
Thanks for your question.
I have to say that your explanation is very good. 10% risk of cardiac event over ten years means that 10 out of 100 patients, on average, will experience an event during that 10 year time period. These numbers are not absolute and they are conclusions from studies that involved thousands of people. The other side of the coin is that 90% of the people with the same risk factors have no cardiac event over that ten year period of time.
Overall, this describes a low risk, but a risk none the less. Your doctor can advise you on ways to lower this risk with diet, exercise, medication (if necessary), smoking cessation, weight loss (if indicated), treatment of underlying disease risk factors such as diabetes and high blood pressure.
I hope this has been helpful.
Martin Cane, M.D.