Open Access Highly Accessed Study protocol

Rationale and methods of the European Study on Cardiovascular Risk Prevention and Management in Daily Practice (EURIKA)

Fernando Rodríguez-Artalejo19*, Eliseo Guallar23, Claudio Borghi4, Jean Dallongeville5, Guy De Backer6, Julian P Halcox7, Ramón Hernández-Vecino8, Francisco Javier Jiménez8, Elvira L Massó-González8, Joep Perk10, Philippe Gabriel Steg11, José R Banegas1 and EURIKA Investigators

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Preventive Medicine and Public Health. School of Medicine. Universidad Autónoma de Madrid. CIBER of Epidemiology and Public Health. Madrid 28029, Spain

2 Departments of Epidemiology and Medicine and Welch Center for Prevention, Epidemiology, and Clinical Research. Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Baltimore, MD, 21205, USA

3 Department of Cardiovascular Epidemiology and Population Genetics. National Center for Cardiovascular Research (CNIC). Madrid 28029, Spain

4 Department of Internal Medicine, Aging and Clinical Nephrology. University of Bologna, Bologna, Italy

5 Inserm U 744, Institut Pasteur de Lille. 59019 Lille Cedex, France

6 Department of Public Health. University of Gent, 9000 Gent, Belgium

7 Wales Heart Research Institute, Cardiff University, Heath Park, Cardiff CF14 4XN, UK

8 Medical Department. AstraZeneca Farmacéutica Spain, S.A, 28003 Madrid

9 Medical Department, AstraZeneca Europe, 1935 Zaventem, Belgium

10 School of Health and Caring Sciences, Linnaeus University, 391 82 Kalmar, Sweden

11 INSERM U 698, Assistance Publique-Hôpitaux de Paris and Université Paris 7, Paris

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BMC Public Health 2010, 10:382  doi:10.1186/1471-2458-10-382

Published: 30 June 2010

Abstract

Background

The EURIKA study aims to assess the status of primary prevention of cardiovascular disease (CVD) across Europe. Specifically, it will determine the degree of control of cardiovascular risk factors in current clinical practice in relation to the European guidelines on cardiovascular prevention. It will also assess physicians' knowledge and attitudes about CVD prevention as well as the barriers impeding effective risk factor management in clinical practice.

Methods/Design

Cross-sectional study conducted simultaneously in 12 countries across Europe. The study has two components: firstly at the physician level, assessing eight hundred and nine primary care and specialist physicians with a daily practice in CVD prevention. A physician specific questionnaire captures information regarding physician demographics, practice settings, cardiovascular prevention beliefs and management. Secondly at the patient level, including 7641 patients aged 50 years or older, free of clinical CVD and with at least one classical risk factor, enrolled by the participating physicians. A patient-specific questionnaire captures information from clinical records and patient interview regarding sociodemographic data, CVD risk factors, and current medications. Finally, each patient provides a fasting blood sample, which is sent to a central laboratory for measuring serum lipids, apolipoproteins, hemoglobin-A1c, and inflammatory biomarkers.

Discussion

Primary prevention of CVD is an extremely important clinical issue, with preventable circulatory diseases remaining the leading cause of major disease burden. The EURIKA study will provide key information to assess effectiveness of and attitudes toward primary prevention of CVD in Europe. A transnational study creates opportunities for benchmarking good clinical practice across countries and improving outcomes. (ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT00882336.)