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Unformatted text preview: Overview of Epidemiology Epidemiology 1. Study of how, when and where diseases occur in populations (communities) 2. Focus is prevention and/or control of disease Disease 1. Any deviation from a state of health including • Illness o Infectious disease (book calls this “communicable disease,” not necessarily true because they aren’t always spread person to person ) o Chronic (non-infectious) disease • Injury • Disability • Death—the ultimate “disease” 2. Disease occurrence is NOT random Depends on aspects of • Time • Place • Person : ex. Gender, age groups, socioeconomic status Objectives of Epidemiology that Relate to Public Health 1. Identification of the cause(s) of diseases and/or the risk factors involved Risk Factors: Characteristics or issues that increase the chances of developing a disease 2. Disease surveillance: Measurement of the extent of disease found in a population (usually by counting cases or deaths) 3. Evaluation of effectiveness of existing and new treatments, preventative measures and health care delivery (clinical trials, look at new treatments and comparing them to old ones) • Epidemiology meets the business world 4. Providing data necessary for public health and regulatory decisions (public policy) 5. Most significant objective is prevention of illness, injury, death, disability • Life expectancy is now 80 years Sporadic and Endemic Disease vs. Epidemic and Pandemic Disease Surveillance provides the data • Counting of cases or deaths, not based on someone’s opinion A disease that occurs occasionally in a population/community is a sporadic disease • No pattern and not tied to anyone, happens all the time A disease that occurs at some constant or expected level in a population/community is endemic disease A disease that occurs in excess of the usual or expected level in a population/community is epidemic disease A worldwide epidemic disease is a pandemic disease • Example: AIDS, there is more of then there was last year and it is found throughout the world Acute vs Chronic Diseases 1 Acute Diseases...
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- Spring '07
- Epidemiology, Ohio State University