Etiology And Natural History Of Disease And Illness

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Book Chapter

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Epidemiology for the Advanced Practice Nurse: A Population Health Approach


A disease has a typical course of progression in a human. This natural course of disease progression that occurs over a period of time provided is known as the natural history of disease. The natural history of disease consists of five stages of disease: susceptibility, incubation, prodromal, acute, and convalescence. This chapter describes an interrelated natural disease history model to include the natural stages of the disease with integrated incubation time periods, subclinical, clinical, prepathogenic, pathogenic, and targeted disease specific interventions. It provides population-based prevention strategies that integrate several types of immunity and prevention levels. The chapter presents prevention strategies to break the chain of infection for specific diseases. Infectious disease incubation periods are dependent upon the rate or organism growth in the host, exposure dosage to the infectious agent, portal of entry, and host immune response.

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Epidemiology For The Advanced Practice Nurse: A Population Health Approach