1. The primary difference
in the focus of inquiry between clinical medicine and epidemiology involves
the emphasis on the individual patient versus the population at
large. Clinical medicine focuses on individual patients and may
not be able to differentiate variability between patients, whereas
epidemiology focuses on large groups of people or populations and
what happens to whole groups.
2. The first “clinical
drug trial’’ was performed by James Lind from
1747 through 1753. Lind performed a study on sailors aboard a ship
at sea. He tested 6 treatments or interventions for scurvy by using
6 pairs of sailors (thus, 6 different treatment groups). Two sailors
received citrus fruit and showed the greatest improvement.
3. In the host–agent–environment
model, the host is the recipient of the disease. Host factors, also referred
to as intrinsic factors, refer to various demographic as well as
behavioral aspects of the host, human beings. The agent of disease,
also called an etiological factor, can consist of a variety of things
that are related to or cause specific disease states. The environment,
or extrinsic factors, consists of the physical and social setting
in which the host and agent interact, possibly leading to disease.
- a. Onset of
a disease outbreak is represented by the first case exhibiting the
signs and symptoms of that disease.
- b. Etiology refers
to the causative agent or risk factor that produces disease.
- c. A vehicle is
an inanimate object that may aid in the transmission, or spread,
of a causative agent of disease.
- d. Avector is
an animate or living thing that may aid in the transmission, or
spread, of a causative agent of disease.
- e. Portals
of entry or exit are the ways in which the causative agent
enters and leaves the host.
- f. A reservoir is
a place where the causative agent may reside or spend part of its
- g. Mode
of transmission refers to the ways in which a causative agent
or risk factor may spread throughout a population.
- h. An epidemic, also
called an outbreak, is a sudden, dramatic increase in the number
of people with a specific disease or problem. It is usually defined
in terms of a specific population in an area over a period of time.
- i. An incubation
period is the interval of time between exposure to, or contact
with, the causative agent or risk factor and the onset of the symptoms
- j. Epidemiology is
the study of disease occurrence in a human population. It also considers
the distribution and determinants of disease. It may also be considered
the method of public health.
- k. Pharmacoepidemiology is
the study of the nature and extent of drug-taking behaviors and
drug use problems. It measures the source, diffusion, use, and effects
of drugs in populations, with a focus on pharmaceutical care outcomes
and the identification of potential or realized drug use problems.