Summary Essential epidemiology: an introduction for students and health professionals

ISBN-10 0521177316 ISBN-13 9780521177313
288 Flashcards & Notes
11 Students
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This is the summary of the book "Essential epidemiology: an introduction for students and health professionals". The author(s) of the book is/are Penny Webb, Chris Bain. The ISBN of the book is 9780521177313 or 0521177316. This summary is written by students who study efficient with the Study Tool of Study Smart With Chris.

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Summary - Essential epidemiology: an introduction for students and health professionals

  • 1 Epidemiology is...

  • What is epidemiology?

    It is about measuring helath, identifying the causes of ill-health and intervening  to improve health. It is about who, where, when, why, and what

  • How to calculate the relative risk?


    Attack Rate (%) who ate the food/ Attack Rate (%) who didn't eat the food
    The risk of people who didn't eat the food, relative to the ris of people who ate the food.

  • What epidemiologists do;
    -Descriptive studies by person, place and time
    -Analytic studies 
    -Intervention studies

  • 1.1 Study designs

  • Descriptive Epidemiology?

    Frequency/amount of disease or other characteristics in a population (person/time/place)
    Typical study designs; survey and cross sectional study
    What, Who, When, Where








  • Analytical Epidemiology?

    Study of the causes of a disease, exposure- disease associations
    Typical study designs;
    * observational; ecological, cross sectional, cohort, case control study
    * experimental; randomized controlled trial

  • Descriptive study

    Describe groups of people (demographics, risk factors, disease status), important to have a representative group

  • Cross- sectional study

    All variables (exposure and outcome) are measured at the same moment in time. You take a snapshot of the situation
    '' is this related to that? and/or to that?''
    Disadvantage; you don't know the cause for sure (reverse causation, confounding)
    -> Ask 1000 people about their current mobile phone use, and whether they suffer from headaches. Check whether the two are linked.  

  • reverse causation;

    Outcome can influence the exposure, association in wrong direction

  • cohort study

    prospective, longtitudanal, forward in time.

    1. Exposed; disease/ no disease
    2. Not exposed; disease/ no disease

    The most computed measures are the incidence rate (by person years) and the incidence proportion, and the attack rate (eigenlijk attack proportion!!!)

  • Case control study;

    backward in time/ retrospective. Exposure in past comparing.
    1. study participants
    2. outcome present?

    2a. no; risk factor present?
    2a. yes; risk factor present?

  • In case of a case-control study you measure neither prevalence or incidence because you determine the amount of people which is artificial. Prevalence/ Incidence only if you know total amount of people.

  • Ecological study

    An observational study in which the unit of analysis is a population or a group instead of an individual

  • Fallacies of ecological studies;
    - not so good to determine cause
    - Assumption that individual members of a group have the average characteristics of the group at large.
    However; Statistics that accurately describe group characteristics do not necessarily apply to individuals within that group.


  • Common in ecological studies;
    - inverse association; negative association; the more.... the lower....
    - positive association; the more.... the more..... (healthy or unhealthy)

  • Migrant study

    can give insight in genetic vs. environmental influences. No control group. '' Natural experiment''

  • Main difference between observational and experimental is that the investigator assigns the exposure (randomly) in a trial

    Defined population --> randomising to groups; 1. exposed (diseas/no disease) 2. not exposed (disease/ no disease)

    Strongest prove for causality; highest intern validity because you get rid of confounding because of random assignment

  • Confounding

    The observed association between exposure and outcome is caused by a third variable that is not part of the biological pathway

  • Hierarchy of epidemiologic study designs; from generate hypotheses till establish causality;

    1. case reports

    2. case series

    3. ecologic studies
    4. cross sectional studies
    5. case control studies
    6. cohort studies
    7. randomized controlled trials

  • case report

    Doctors description and interpetation of individual patients.


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Latest added flashcards

True or false? A population prevention strategy fails to address public health problems arising from small but widespread risks that may be substantial. 
False. It should be a high-risk strategy instead of a population strategy
True or false? In an ecological study, exposure and disease are studied on the group level, not on the individual level.
What is the index case?
The index case is the first person who got the disease.
What is a case control study?
A study where a group of people with disease are compared to a group without the disease, selected to represent the population from which the cases came.
What is morbidity?
Morbidity is the incidence of a disease or the rate of sickness
What is meanth with 'crude rates'?
These are basic rates which describe the overall incidence or death rate in a population without taking any other features of the population into account (in contrast to standardised rates).
What is meant with ecological fallacy?
An error made when information about groups of people is used to make inferences about individuals.
How can you call the next wordings? - international sources- national data sources - disease-based resources
sources of summary data
What are the following types of study also called: mortality data, death certificates, verbal autopsy, morbidity data, diasease registries, hospital records
routine data collections
Name a few types of descriptive studies:
Case report, prevalence study, survey, monitoring study, time trends, mortality/ morbidity statistics, migrant studies, ecological or correlation studies