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Response: Risk Is Not Causation

      Farsalinos and Niaura state that the term risk always requires causal relation, which is debatable.
      • Maldonado G
      • Greenland S
      Estimating causal effects.
      It is important to understand that risk and causality are different concepts. In the U.S., most people die in hospitals, meaning a higher statistical risk of dying if you are in a hospital. We cannot interpret this as a temporal relation that U.S. hospitals cause death. The increased risk of death is secondary to treatment provided for life-threatening terminal illnesses during the course of treatment rather than being due to the direct effect of treatment provided in the hospitals. The term risk is used to quantify the likelihood of some event occurring given the presence of some factor. There are various ways to measure risk, such as association risk difference, relative risk, and OR, depending on the nature of the study.
      • Hernán MA
      A definition of causal effect for epidemiological research.
      ,

      Pennsylvania Department of Health. Tools of the trade. The notion of risk.www.health.pa.gov/topics/HealthStatistics/Statistical-Resources/UnderstandingHealthStats/Pages/Tools-of-the-trade.aspx. Accessed January 25, 2020.

      However, by no means do such terms imply causation.
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      1. Pennsylvania Department of Health. Tools of the trade. The notion of risk.www.health.pa.gov/topics/HealthStatistics/Statistical-Resources/UnderstandingHealthStats/Pages/Tools-of-the-trade.aspx. Accessed January 25, 2020.

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