risk factor

Formal Definition

A risk factor a) precedes the outcome, and b) when used it divides a population into high risk and low risk subgroups. Risk factors may be population specific. They may be fixed markers, variable markers or causal risk factors.

Offord DR, Kraemer HC. Risk factors and prevention. Evidence-Based Mental Health 2000;3:70-71.

A risk factor is a characteristic, condition or habit that increases a person’s chances to develop a particular disease or injury, for example, physical inactivity may, over time, contribute to weight gain, high blood pressure and high cholesterol levels.

  • Categories: Regulatory