ACC/AHA guidelines superior to ESC/EAS guidelines for primary prevention with statins in non-diabetic Europeans: The Copenhagen General Population Study

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Aim We compared the 2013 American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association (ACC/AHA) and the 2016 European Society of Cardiology/European Atherosclerosis Society (ESC/EAS) guidelines on prevention of atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ASCVD) using different risk prediction models [US Pooled Cohort Equations (USPCE for any ASCVD) and European Systematic COronary Risk Evaluation system (European-SCORE for fatal ASCVD)] and different statin eligibility criteria. Methods and results We examined 44 889 individuals aged 40-75 recruited in 2003-09 in the Copenhagen General Population Study, all free of ASCVD, diabetes, and statin use at baseline. We detected 2217 any ASCVD events and 199 fatal ASCVD events through 2014. The predicted-to-observed event ratio was 1.2 using US-PCE for any ASCVD and 5.0 using European-SCORE for fatal ASCVD. The US-PCE, but not the European-SCORE, was well-calibrated around decision thresholds for statin therapy. For a Class I recommendation, 42% of individuals qualified for statins using the ACC/AHA guidelines vs. 6% with the ESC/EAS guidelines. Using ACC/AHA- vs. ESC/EAS-defined statin eligibility led to a substantial gain in sensitivity (+62% for any ASCVD and+76% for fatal ASCVD) with a smaller loss in specificity (-35% for any ASCVD and -36% for fatal ASCVD). Similar differences between the ACC/AHA and ESC/EAS guidelines were found for men and women separately, and for Class IIa recommendations. The sensitivity and specificity of a US-PCE risk of 5% were similar to those of a European-SCORE risk of 1.4%, whereas a US-PCE risk of 7.5% was similar to a European-SCORE risk of 2.4%. Conclusions The ACC/AHA guidelines were superior to the ESC/EAS guidelines for primary prevention of ASCVD, that is, for accurately assigning statin therapy to those who would benefit.

Original languageEnglish
JournalEuropean Heart Journal
Volume38
Issue number8
Pages (from-to)586-594
ISSN0195-668X
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2017

    Research areas

  • Atherosclerosis, Guideline, Lipids, Lipoproteins, Myocardial infarction, Stroke

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