Disease risk is based on the incidence of a disease. The incidence is the number of people with a disease among a larger group. For example, if you are among a group of ten people and one has a disease, the incidence of disease is one in ten. Your risk of having the disease is therefore 10%.
Relative risk is simply the difference between two incidence rates. If the number of people with a disease in one group is one in ten, and the number of people with a disease in another group is five in ten, your risk of having the disease is five times higher if you are in the second group. This five-fold difference is called the relative risk.
PDI’s blood tests identify groups of people who are in a prodrome state, and thus have a higher risk of a disease. For example, our Cologic® test detects people that are in a colorectal cancer prodrome. These people have an incidence of colorectal cancer that is up to 50 times higher* than people who are not in the colorectal cancer prodrome. This does not mean every person in the prodrome state has cancer – it simply means they have a higher relative risk.
Our PanaSee™ and Alz-ID™ blood tests for pancreatic cancer and Alzheimer’s disease work the same way, by identifying subgroups of people that are in the prodrome states for these diseases. The incidence of a disease is higher for people in the prodrome state, making the relative risk of the disease higher as well.
People who test positive for a prodrome imbalance can undergo further testing, be pro-active about living a healthy lifestyle, and are candidates for therapeutic restoration. Learn more about our therapeutics here.
*Based on the difference in predicted CRC incidence rates between subjects with Cologic® positive and negative test results and Canadian Cancer Statistics 2012.
You can think about the risk of getting a disease like the risk of getting a flat tire on your car. The tread depth on your tires can range from brand new (100%), to totally bald (0%). Most flat tires occur when there is little or no tread remaining, because the tire is more susceptible to being punctured. This doesn’t mean that new tires will never go flat – it is just less likely.
A worn tire represents a prodrome for a flat tire, and is analogous to the human disease prodrome states that we measure. That is, it is a measurable condition that represents increased risk. To prevent a flat tire you should routinely measure your tread depth (equal to diagnosing your risk). If your tread depth gets too low, the risk of a flat is high and you should replace your tires (equal to a therapeutic intervention).