Cuál es la diferencia entre endemia, epidemia y pandemia

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Tras confirmarse casos de coronavirus en más de 40 países, la alarma ya es mundial y desde la Organización Mundial de la Salud ( OMS) ya informaron que el brote podría llegar a ser pandemia. En China, ya murieron más de 2700 personas. Fuera del país, la cifra aún es baja pero crece. Italia, Irán y Corea del Sur están entre los países más afectados. ¿Por qué se comienza a hablar de pandemia, en lugar de epidemia endemia? Si bien, los términos hacen referencia a la propagación de virus y enfermedades, la diferencia está en el alcance y prevalencia de los mismos.

Endemia

Una enfermedad que se presenta con regularidad en ciertas regiones se denomina endémica. En estos casos, el número de enfermedades permanece relativamente constante a lo largo del tiempo. Un ejemplo típico es la malaria.

Epidemia

Una epidemia se produce cuando una enfermedad contagiosa se propaga rápidamente en una población determinada, afectando simultáneamente a un gran número de personas durante un período de tiempo concreto. Un ejemplo es la epidemia del síndrome respiratorio agudo grave (SARS) en 2003.

Pandemia

Si el brote afecta a regiones geográficas más extensas, cruzando fronteras internacionales y propagándose a lo largo de varios continentes, se cataloga como pandemia. Por ejemplo, la gripe porcina, causada por una variante del influenzavirus A, desencadenó una pandemia en 2009.

Fuente: La Nación

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