Cleveland Clinic develops tool to determine patients' risk of developing complications

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Physicians at Cleveland Clinic have released a calculator for patients with type 2 diabetes to determine their risk of developing major health complications over a 10-year period depending on their treatment path.

"The calculator can be a useful tool for physicians and patients with type 2 diabetes and obesity. It shows a patient's risk of heart disease, stroke, heart failure, diabetic kidney disease and death over the next 10 years with usual care. It also shows how a patients' risk of those adverse events could change after metabolic surgery," said Ali Aminian, MD, a bariatric surgeon at Cleveland Clinic.

It took two years to develop the calculator, known as the 10-year Individualized Diabetes Complications Risk Score. During two phases, researchers observed nearly 2,300 patients who underwent metabolic surgery and 11,500 matched patients with similar characteristics who received usual care.

Phase one results showed patients with type 2 diabetes and obesity had a 40 percent lower risk of death and major adverse cardiovascular events if they underwent weight-loss surgery. Surgical patients also lost more weight, had better diabetes control and used fewer medications.

During the second phase, researches used the same group of patients to identify predictors for different health outcomes. They used evidence-based models to build the risk calculator, which estimates the likelihood a patient develops chronic conditions.

"Based on the advice of subject matter experts, our team was able to explore 26 risk factors for the different outcomes, including risk of dying, in that large group of patients," said Michael Kattan, PhD, chairman of the department of quantitative health sciences at Cleveland Clinic's Lerner Research Institute. "We then compared machine learning and traditional statistical techniques to identify the most accurate predication models for each outcome and built those into the calculator."

To access the calculator, click here.

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