These last 15 years witnessed the implementation
longitudinal studies providing data on extremely
numerous population samples, with a
follow up of
and non fatal
cardiovascular events and cancer. The relevant data,
stored in large databases and including biological samples
preserved at very low temperatures, allowed an in-depth
processing, in particular the realization of risk assessment at national level which
considers differences in age, gender, period of observation and
This line of research, included in Progetto Cuore, pursued the following objectives:
The value of this study, compared to similar studies carried out in Italy up to now, lies in the fact that the
cohorts were enrolled in recent
years, included women and involved populations living in different
geographic areas of the country. In addition, both fatal and non
fatal events were collected and validated.
The first significant result was the assessment of myocardial infarction in Italy. This was followed by the implementation of cardiovascular risk charts based on risk factors (gender, age, history of diabetes, smoking habit, total serum cholesterol and systolic blood pressure) and having the following end points: definite and possible myocardial infarction, sudden death, stroke and revascularization surgery.
Together with the charts, also the individual risk score was developed, a more accurate tool for risk evaluation. In addition to the risk factors considered by the cardiovascular risk charts, the latter also takes into account the value of serum HDL cholesterol and the prescription of anti-hypertensive medications, an indicator of longstanding hypertension assessment.