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Prev Med. 2013 Oct;57(4):328-33. doi: 10.1016/j.ypmed.2013.06.007. Epub 2013 Jun 13.

Estimating the risk of peripheral artery disease using different population strategies.

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Cardiovascular Epidemiology and Genetics, IMIM (Hospital del Mar Medical Research Institute), Barcelona, Spain. Electronic address:



The objective of this study is to compare the clinical performance of different strategies, REASON, PREVALENT, Inter-Society Consensus (ISC), and the American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association (ACC/AHA) Guidelines, in the selection of candidates for peripheral artery disease (PAD) screening using ankle-brachial index (ABI).


Our work is a population-based cross-sectional study conducted in Extremadura (Spain) in 2007-2009. Participants were ≥50years old and free of cardiovascular disease. ABI and cardiovascular risk factors were measured.


In total, 1288 individuals (53% women), with a mean age of 63years (standard deviation (SD) 9) were included. The prevalence of ABI <0.9 was 4.9%. REASON risk score identified 53% of the sample to screen with sensitivity of 87.3%, quite similar to that identified in ISC and ACC/AHA strategies (both 90.5%), and specificity of 48.3%, higher than that of the ISC (30.9%) and ACC/AHA (31.1%) strategies. Although the Youden index was 0.4 for both REASON and PREVALENT risk scores, the latter's sensitivity was 60.3%, almost 30 points less than all other strategies.


REASON risk score was the strategy with the highest clinical performance and efficiency, with sensitivity of 87.3% and specificity higher than that of the ISC and ACC/AHA strategies. Although very specific, the PREVALENT strategy had low sensitivity making it difficult to be implemented as a screening tool.


Ankle-brachial index; Atherosclerosis; Peripheral artery disease; Primary prevention; Risk factors; Screening

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