Epidemiology is the branch of medicine that deals with the incidence, distribution, and possible control of diseases and other factors relating to health (Schneider, 8). In 1847, a Viennese obstetrician by the name of Ignac Semmelweis discovered the importance of handwashing in a hospital setting (Gawande, 15). Before the discovery of antibiotics, childbed fever was the number one cause of maternal death in childbirth. Semmelweis realized by not washing their hands, doctors were the ones responsible for carrying the bacteria that caused the fever from mother to mother. After implementing strict hand washing rules the death rate of mothers decreased from 20% to 1% almost overnight (Gawande, 15). Discoveries like the one …show more content…
Scientists have yet to discover what exactly causes BSE but the leading theory is that it is caused by prions--infectious agents made entirely out of protein that are usually found in the brain and spinal cord and can only currently be treated if caught before symptoms arise. Humans that eat infected meat may be infected with Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease which causes brain lesions that ultimately kill the infected.
Another important function of epidemiology is the control of disease. Epidemiologists are tasked with researching and creating vaccines. A vaccine is a substance used to kickstart the production of antibodies and help build a resistance to one or several diseases, created from a part of the existing disease or a man-made substance. To create the vaccines scientists have to do thousands of hours of research and testing. There are many different types of vaccines; some deactivate the disease, some weaken it, and some even use a piece of the bacteria or virus to counteract its ill effects. If a vaccine cannot be found epidemiologists can use the factors that facilitate the transmission of the disease-also known as determinants of the disease- ,such as where it is spreading and the medium it uses to travel , to keep it from spreading. An example of a disease without a vaccine but with clear determinants is HIV.
Epidemiologist do not only work with diseases that are infectious they also work with chronic
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Dr. Gawande 's demonstration of diligence was expressed from his study of the 19th century Vienna on the importance of hand-washing, the care taken to save the wounded in Afghanistan and the drive to eliminate the Poliovirus in India. The task of washing your hands may seem so tedious to some but Dr. Gawande explained the significance in patient care as a prevention of becoming carriers of bacteria. In 1847, a Viennese obstetrician, Ignac Semmelweis was one of the first to realize that doctors were the ones transmitting Steptococcus to mothers and babies during childbirth. This led to what was called "childbed fever" also known as puerperal fever which was a leading cause for maternal death during childbirth. Dr. Semmelweis
Mr. Gawande starts his literature on washing hands. He introduces two friends a microbiologist and an infectious disease specialist. Both work hard and diligently against the spread of diseases just like Semmelweis who is mentioned in the chapter. Something I learned, that not many realize, is that each year two million people acquire an infection while they are in the hospital. Mainly because the clinicians only wash their hands one-third to one-half as many times as they should. Semmelweis, mentioned earlier, concluded in 1847 that doctors themselves were to blame for childbed fever, which was the leading cause of
Although most disease struck the poorest, the upper class was not fully immune. Because people wanted to move to cities to make their lives better, they were forced to live around these diseases without proper means for prevention, protection, and recovery. Once contracting the disease, they would either die within hours or suffer from uncontrollable diarrhea and pain. In addition, scientific knowledge on disease was not as developed as it fortunately is today. Doctors had not yet learned the concept of a germ theory and instead associated the disease with the “bad air” that surrounded toxic, polluted cities. This “bad air” was known as miasa and was incorrectly used to explain the spread of cholera in major cities during the mid 1800s. After studies and research, doctors noticed that there was a heavy concentration of miasmata near certain rivers, but they still connected it to a lack of air quality in bustling cities such as Manchester, London, and Paris. Although air pollution and coal emissions did play a role in certain illnesses, they were not the main cause for diseases such as cholera. Poor ventilation, dirty homes, malnourishment, and no access to clean water made people easily susceptible to a ruthless disease like cholera. Moreover, causes of cholera were investigated more thoroughly after John Snow’s theory claimed that cholera was spread through the water John Snow was an English physician who is today considered one of the fathers of modern epidemiology, the branch of medicine that deals with the distribution and control of diseases relating to health. Finally, doctors could see cholera in a new light and were able to find better means of protection and prevention for its victims. Today, doctors recognize the germ theory of disease which states that some diseases are caused by microorganisms, and not just by “bad
Despite its barbaric reputation, the Civil War greatly impacted the sanitation systems used in today’s medical fields. One major impact in today’s sanitation systems, are the methods doctors and surgeons use to help prevent disease and infections. One way doctors prevent the spread of diseases, is by washing their hands for a full ten minutes before operating or examining a patient. This method of preventing diseases is efficient because it kills the germs that are on a medical officials hand and prevents them from spreading to the next patient from the doctor or surgeon palpating the patient (“Medicine During the Civil War”). This is one of the greatest medical innovations gained from the Civil War. Since there are now proper medical schools, doctors and surgeons are now able to realize the causes of certain bacterial and viral infections. Another way that today’s sanitation systems were affected from the Civil War, are the precautionary steps that medical officials take to keep today’s hospitals clean from bacteria and viruses. Today’s
Epidemiology is the study of diseases and informs the public about the health epidemics and new standards put in place. They usually work in laboratories, businesses, and offices where they work on discovering many diseases and conducting research while also finding cures to new diseases. In order to become an epidemiologist, I will have undergo through 4 year as an undergraduate and obtain a Masters in Biology or Public Health. In high school, it is recommended for me take Biology, Chemistry or to have some type of science background in order to help me get best prepared. In this paper I will discuss the history of epidemiology, the pathway to get to this career, and why this job/career will be the best fit for me.
The hygiene movement helped in the avoidance of communicable diseases, diseases for example cholera, tuberculosis and water illnesses in large part by modifying the people surroundings. In the 1850s, John Snow assisted in recognized the importance in data collection and documentation. His actions terminated an outbreak of cholera in a district of London. Using the same methodology Ignaz Semmelweis, applied it to restraint fever of childbirth a major source of maternal mortality. The reason that this was happening was that after physicians worked on the death bodies, usually they did not wash their and delivered babies and contaminating both, the mother and the baby.
Epidemiology is the study of “what is upon the people”, looking at the patterns and distribution of disease or adverse health outcomes in a population, what factors have influenced these adverse health outcomes, and what interventions can be developed to maintain health and prevent disease (Stanhope, 2014). Focusing on populations, descriptive epidemiology looks at conditions in terms of place, person, and time, and the relationship between determinants such as behavior, environment, and exposure patterns (Stanhope, 2014). Florence Nightingale conducted one of the first epidemiological studies, looking at soldier’s conditions in relationship to recovery. She found that soldiers in poor sanitation adversely affected their health outcomes, and improving these environmental conditions decreased the mortality rate in soldiers. Florence Nightingale
Epidemiology is what advises people of new world epidemics and new health standards worldwide. Epidemiologist are well known for their ideal way to handle and control epidemics of the everyday modern world by conducting research and going through various experiments. Epidemiology was first well known in the mid-1800´s (1854) but is know to have existed for about 2,500 years
BSE was classified later as Mad Cow Disease, which was first discovered in cattle in Great Britain. According to the Extension Disaster Education Network (EDEN), BSE is an infectious neurological disorder of cattle caused by feeding the certain infected cattle and sheep tissues to cattle in the form of ruminant derived protein supplements. Ruminant animals are classified as animals with split hooves, multiple stomachs and one that chews on cud.
My passion for my intended research stems from 6 years ago, when my grandfather, with decades of smoking and hypertension history, was diagnosed with severe mitral insufficiency and went through a 7-hours cardiac valve replacement operation. Witnessed how he went through unimaginable pain during the thoracotomy and rehabilitation process, I realized the path that I would like to traverse and it led me to take up public health as my undergraduate major. I wish to make my contributions to prevent and address non-communicable diseases (NCDs), including cardiovascular diseases, from both local and global level. Throughout my undergraduate studies I supplemented my academic knowledge with research and internship experience.
The first discussion topic for this course, PHLT: 319 Epidemiology for Health Educators, centered on the definition of epidemiology. Quickly, students became aware that epidemiology was not only the study of disease, rather the “study of the distribution and determinants of health-related states or events in human populations and the application of this study to the prevention and control of health problems”(2013, Merrill, 2). In an effort to reduce major public health events, the bacterial disease, cholera, has been studied over many years by researchers, specifically naming Dr. John Snow. Appendix I titled Case Studies, in Ray M. Merrill’s Introduction to Epidemiology, provides information, incidence and prevalence rates, and protocols for
This paper defines and explains the six core functions of epidemiology: Public health surveillance, field investigation, analytic studies, evaluations, linkages, and policy development. The core functions of epidemiology lay down a foundation on which epidemiologists can begin to work from. This paper will look at the benefits of incorporating all six of these functions into a working plan when health officials, medical personnel, first responders, etc., encounter a disease or illness that needs to be identified, treated and contained.
Epidemiology is a medical science discipline that arranges the structure for studying the distribution and determinants of health, communicable disease, and circumstances related to health status. The epidemiology research help to understand in what means a person catch diseases, the changes, and how the disease affect the population. The nurses that work with these communities to help identify the onset of communicable diseases determine new victims, the patterns it spread, the causes or preventive methods are known as community or public health nursing (Maurer, Smith, 2013). The purpose of this paper is to explain on the concepts of a communicable disease “Chickenpox” with its own unique epidemiology and nursing research to this
Because improvements in nutrition and sanitation have been made, many epidemics have ended. As longevity of life increases, chronic diseases have taken the place of infectious disease as the leading cause of death. The different modes of transmission, disease development, and disease spectrum are all important factors to consider when studying the transmission of communicable diseases. It is also important to know about emerging infectious diseases. It is important to be aware of these diseases so that signs of these symptoms can be easily recognizable to provide the best patient care.