What are the major cardiovascular risk factors identified by the JNC 7 guidelines?

Updated: Feb 22, 2019
  • Author: Matthew R Alexander, MD, PhD; Chief Editor: Eric H Yang, MD  more...
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The JNC 7 identifies the following as major cardiovascular risk factors [5] :

  • Hypertension: component of metabolic syndrome

  • Tobacco use, particularly cigarettes, including chewing tobacco

  • Elevated LDL cholesterol (or total cholesterol ≥240 mg/dL) or low HDL cholesterol: component of metabolic syndrome

  • Diabetes mellitus: component of metabolic syndrome

  • Obesity (BMI ≥30 kg/m2): component of metabolic syndrome

  • Age greater than 55 years for men or greater than 65 years for women: increased risk begins at the respective ages; the Adult Treatment Panel III used earlier age cut points to suggest the need for earlier action

  • Estimated glomerular filtration rate less than 60 mL/min

  • Microalbuminuria

  • Family history of premature cardiovascular disease (men < 55 years; women < 65 years)

  • Lack of exercise

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