Epidemic

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For other uses, see Epidemic (disambiguation). In epidemiology, an epidemic (επί (epi)- meaning "upon or above" and δήμος (demos)- meaning "people"), occurs when new cases of a certain disease, in a given human population, and during a given period, substantially exceed what is expected based on recent experience.[1]:354[2] Epidemiologists often consider the term outbreak to be synonymous to epidemic, but the general public typically perceives outbreaks to be more local and less serious than epidemics[2][1]:55, 354 An epidemic may be restricted to one locale, however if it spreads to other countries or continents and affects a substantial number of people, it may be termed a pandemic.[1]:55 The declaration of an epidemic usually requires a good understanding of a baseline rate of incidence; epidemics for certain diseases, such as influenza, are defined as reaching some defined increase in incidence above this baseline. [2] A few cases of a very rare disease may be classified as an epidemic, while many cases of a common disease (such as the common cold) would not.
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1 Causes of epidemics 2 Types of epidemics 3 Etymology 4 See also 5 Notes 6 External links

[edit]Causes

of epidemics

There are several changes that may occur in an infectious agent that may trigger an epidemic these include:[1]:55

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Increased virulence Introduction into a novel setting Changes in host susceptibility to the infectious agent Changes in host exposure to the infectious agent

An epidemic disease is not required to be contagious,[2][3] and the term has been applied to West Nile fever[2] and the obesity epidemic, among others.[3]

[edit]Types

of epidemics

Common source outbreak

[1]:56 Propagated outbreak In a propagated outbreak. epidemeo. it can be termed a point source outbreak. which later took its medical meaning from a treatise by Hippocrates. If the exposure was continuous or variable.[3] Prior to Hippocrates. If the exposure is singular and all of the affected individuals develop the disease over a single exposure and incubation course.[1]:56 Many epidemics will have characteristics of both common source and propagated outbreaks. respectively.[1]:56-58 [edit]Etymology The term epidemic derives from a term first attributed to Homer's Odyssey.Two examples of common sources of outbreak are the epidemics Emmititus and Powititus.[3] Thucydides's description of the Plague of Athens is considered one of the earliest accounts of a disease epidemic.epidemios. the affected individuals had an exposure to a common agent. Affected individuals may become independent reservoirs leading to further exposures. For example. Epidemics. it can be termed a continuous outbreak or intermittent outbreak. These diseases are reflected in the growth of the skull.[3] . epidamos and other variants had meanings similar to the current definitions of "indigenous" or "endemic". secondary person-to-person spread may occur after a common source exposure or a environmental vectors may spread a zoonotic diseases agent. In a common source outbreak. the disease spreads person-to-person.

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