Cardiovascular Risk Profile and Lifestyle Habits in a Cohort of Italian Cardiologists (from the SOCRATES Survey)
Cardiologists' cardiovascular profile and lifestyle habits are poorly known worldwide. To offer a snapshot of the personal health habits of Italian cardiologists, the Survey on Cardiac Risk Profile and Lifestyle Habits in a Cohort of Italian Cardiologists (SOCRATES) was undertaken. A Web-based electronic self-reported survey, accessible through a dedicated Web site, was used for data entry, and data were transferred through the Web to a central database. The survey was divided into 4 sections: baseline characteristics, medical illnesses and traditional cardiovascular risk factors, lifestyle habits, and selected medication use. The e-mail databases of 3 national scientific societies were used to survey a large and representative sample of Italian cardiologists. During the 3-month period of the survey, 1,770 of the 5,240 cardiologists contacted (33.7%) completed and returned ≥1 sections of the questionnaire. More than 49% of the participants had 1 of the 5 classic risk factors (hypertension, hypercholesterolemia, active smoking, diabetes, and previous vascular events). More than 28% of respondents had 2 to 5 risk factors, and only 22.1% had none and therefore, according to age and gender, could be considered at low to intermediate risk. Despite the reported risk factors, >90% of cardiologists had a self-reported risk perception quantified as mild, such as low or intermediate. Furthermore, overweight and obesity, physical inactivity, and stress at work or at home were commonly reported, as well as limited use of cardiovascular drugs, such as statins or aspirin. In conclusion, the average cardiovascular profile of Italian cardiologist is unlikely to be considered ideal or even favorable according to recent statements and guidelines regarding cardiovascular risk.
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