Dr. med. Dirk Manski



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Prevalence: Indicator in Epidemiology

The term prevalence comes from the Latin word praevalere: to prevail over. Prevalence is a indicator of epidemiology to characterize the extent or proportion of disease or certain condition (all stages, the new ones and the existing) in a particular group (population). Prevalence is especially useful for describing the extent of long lasting diseases within a population.

Point Prevalence

Number of individuals in the studied population, that at a given short time period have experienced a disease or certain condition, usually given per 1000 or 100,000 persons.

Period Prevalence

Number of individuals in the studied population, that at some point of the defined (long) time period have experienced a disease or certain condition. Examples are:

Prevalence Rate

Number of individuals who have experienced a disease or certain condition at some time in proportion to the number of people tested.


See also incidence.



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  Deutsche Version: Prävalenz