World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Natural history of disease

Article Id: WHEBN0011761108
Reproduction Date:

Title: Natural history of disease  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Chronic condition, History of medicine, Periapical periodontitis, Trigger finger, Etiology
Collection: Epidemiology, Etiology, History of Medicine
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Publication
Date:
 

Natural history of disease

Autopsy (1890) by Enrique Simonet.

The natural history of disease is the uninterrupted progression of a disease in an individual from the moment of exposure to causal agents until recovery or death. Knowledge of the natural history of disease ranks alongside causal understanding in importance for disease prevention and control. Natural history of disease is one of the major elements of descriptive epidemiology.[1]

The "iceberg phenomenon" is a metaphor emphasizing that for virtually every health problem the number of known cases of disease is outweighed by those that remain undiscovered, much as the unseen part of an iceberg is much larger than the part that is visible above the water. This term was first applied in the context of the natural history of disease by John M Last.[2] The iceberg phenomenon attempts to assess the burden of disease and the need for services, as well as the selection of representative cases for study. This leads to what has been called the "clinician’s fallacy" in which an inaccurate view of the nature and causes of a disease results from studying the minority of cases of the disease [3][4]

References

  1. ^ Bhopal, R. S. (2002). Concepts of Epidemiology. Oxford: Oxford University Press. [1]
  2. ^ Last JM. The Iceberg: completing the clinical picture in general practice. Lancet. 1963;2:28–31.
  3. ^ Morris, J. N. (1975). Uses of Epidemiology. New York: Churchill & Livingstone.
  4. ^ Duncan, D. F. (1987). Epidemiology: Basis for Disease Prevention and Health Promotion. New York: MacMillan.
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and USA.gov, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for USA.gov and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
 
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
 
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.
 


Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.