How do absolute and relative risks differ in healthcare?

Advertisement
Advertisement

Statistics about health can be confusing because risk can be measured in different ways. Risk indicates whether a treatment or behavior (an exposure) is associated with the likelihood of developing a disease or condition (an outcome).

Relative risk is an indicator of the strength of the association between exposure and outcome. It is used to assess the importance of a particular factor or treatment in the development of a disease or condition. Relative risk is often expressed as a percentage.

Absolute risk describes the effect of an exposure on an outcome in the general population (as opposed to comparing specific groups).

Our Bodies, Ourselves: Menopause

More About this Book

Our Bodies, Ourselves: Menopause

FROM THE EDITORS OF THE CLASSIC "BIBLE OF WOMEN'S HEALTH," A TRUSTWORTHY, UP-TO-DATE GUIDE TO HELP EVERY WOMAN NAVIGATE THE MENOPAUSE TRANSITION For decades, millions of women have relied on Our...

Continue Learning about Diagnostic Procedures

Diagnostic Procedures

Diagnostic Procedures

Allergy tests, echocardiograms, biopsies, semen analysis and spinal taps are just a few of the medical diagnostic procedures that are performed on patients diagnose diseases and conditions. These classification procedures do not i...

nvolve x-ray imaging or a surgical procedure, but, involve taking measurements and samples of fluids, tissues and cells. Learn more about diagnostic procedures from our experts.
More

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.