Instructions and interpretation
How do I use the FINRISK calculator?
Enter into the FINRISK calculator
- your sex
- your age
- your total cholesterol level
- your HDL cholesterol level
- whether you smoke
- your systolic blood pressure (the higher of the two values, the lower values is diastolic blood pressure)
- whether you have diabetes (type 1 or type 2 diabetes)
- whether either of your parents has had acute myocardial infarction before the age of 60
- whether either of your parents has had a stoke before the age of 75
You can feed in your data by entering the data in the calculator fields.
Your results are displayed as bar charts and as text below the charts.
How should I interpret the results?
The calculator gives:
- your risk of acute myocardial infarction
- your risk of acute disorder of the cerebral circulation
- your combined risk, i.e. your risk of having either of the two conditions.
There are three bars for each risk, and a percentage below each bar. If your risk is over 10% (the pink coloured bar), you should consult your physician.
What the percentages mean:
The first percentage (the pink coloured bar) indicates your risk of acute myocardial infarction, acute disorder of the cerebral circulation or either of the two in the next 10 years.
The second percentage (the blue coloured bar) describes the risk of illness for persons:
- who is of your age
- who is of your sex
- whose risk factors are optimal:
- cholesterol is 4.0 mmol/l (for the HDL-cholesterol the calculator uses the value 1.5 mmol/l)
- systolic blood pressure is 110 mmHg
- does not smoke
- who does not have diabetes
- whose parents have not had acute myocardial infarction before the age of 60, and
- whose parents have not had a stroke before the age of 75.
The third percentage (the yellow coloured bar) indicates the risk of disease for someone who is of your age and sex and whose risk factors are at the level of the average Finnish person of your age and sex.
Young persons have a very low risk of disease. You can assess the possible changes in your risk factors by setting your age at 60 years or by comparing your risk to someone of your age who has no risk factors. The lower your risk factors are, the better.
What is the purpose of the calculator?
The FINRISK calculator can be used by health care professionals and by anyone who is interested in their own health state.
Health care professionals can use the calculator to help them to assess their patients' overall risk of cardiovascular diseases.
When a professional evaluates the need to treat the risk factors of a patient's cardiovascular disease (high blood pressure and high cholesterol), the professional assesses the overall risk according to the Current Care Guideline rather than simply examining individual risk factors. For this reason, decisions concerning the treatment of elevated blood pressure or high cholesterol cannot be made solely on the basis of the risk assessment provided by the calculator.
Patients' need for treatment is affected by their risk factors and their other medical conditions as well as by their family history. Doctors make treatment decisions based on patients' individual and genetic risk factors and their general health state.
Doctors can use the FINRISK calculator to assess their patients' overall risk with regard to individual and genetic risk factors, but the calculator does take into account the presence of associated diseases or the severity of an existing condition.
Health care professionals can also use the FINRISK calculator to encourage and help their clients to change their lifestyle. The calculator illustrates how different kinds of variables can affect a person's risk of disease. The calculator is not, however, a tool for prevention or treatment.
What data does the calculator use?
The FINRISK calculator is based on risk factor data and morbidity monitoring of persons studied in the FINRISK Study in 1982, 1987, 1992, 2002 and 2007. Morbidity and mortality data on study participants in the study was collected for a period of 10 years following the study from the Cause of Death Register and are Care Register for Health Care.
The risk factor data are obtained from the National FINRISK Study. Multivariate analysis has been used to calculate the impact each of the risk factors included in the calculator have on disease prevalence and mortality.
The risk calculation takes into account age, gender, whether a person smokes, total cholesterol, HDL cholesterol, systolic blood pressure as well as whether the person suffers from type 2 diabetes and whether either of the person's parents has had acute myocardial infarction before the age of 60 or a stroke before the age of 75. These analyses have produced risk coefficients for each risk factor in the model used to calculate the person's risk of illness.
Changes made to the calculator
The latest version of the FINRISK calculator (version 2.0, updated on 17 December 2020) includes two new sets of research materials for 2002 and 2007, and an older age group for those aged 65–74. A stroke suffered by one of the person’s parents has been added to the calculator as a risk factor. These changes will allow the calculator to provide a more accurate forecast of your risk of illness.
More information (in Finnish)
- National FINRISK Study
- Vartiainen V, Laatikainen T, Jousilahti P, Peltonen M, Niiranen T, Salomaa V. Sepelvaltimotaudin ja aivohalvauksen riskin arviointi FINRISKI 2.0 -laskurilla. Suomen Lääkärilehti 2020;75:2778-2782 (the endpoint diagnoses, risk factors and calculation formulas used in the latest version of the calculator).