Objectives: Quantifying the risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD) in a community is important in planning preventive strategies, but such data are limited from developing countries, especially South Asia. We aimed to estimate the risks of coronary heart disease (CHD), total CVD, and CVD mortality in a Sri Lankan community.
Methods: A community survey was conducted in an urban health administrative area among individuals aged 35-64 years, selected by stratified random sampling. Their 10-year CHD, total CVD, and CVD mortality risks were estimated using three risk prediction tools: National Cholesterol Education Program-Adult Treatment Panel III (NCEP-ATP III), Systematic Coronary Risk Evaluation (SCORE), and World Health Organisation/ International Society of Hypertension (WHO/ISH) charts.
Results: Among study participants (n=2985), 54.5% were females, and mean age (SD) was 52.4 (7.8) years. According to NCEP-ATP III ('hard' CHD risk), WHO/ISH (total CVD risk), and SCORE (CVD mortality risk) criteria, 25.4% (95% CI 23.6-27.2), 8.2% (95% CI 7.3-9.2), and 11.8 (95% CI 10.5-13.1) respectively were classified as at 'high risk'. The proportion of high risk participants increased with age. 'High risk' was commoner among males (30.3% vs 20.6%, p<0.001) according to NCEPATP III criteria, but among females (9.7% vs. 6.7%, p<0.001) according to WHO/ISH criteria. No significant gender difference was noted in SCORE risk categories.
Conclusions: A large proportion of individuals in this community are at risk of developing cardiovascular diseases, especially in older age groups. Risk estimates varied with the different prediction tools, and were comparatively higher with NCEP-ATP III charts.