Incubation period

The epidemiological term, the incubation period is the time between exposure to something pathogenic (including radiation, microbes or chemicals) and when the pathology first becomes apparent by symptoms. Some authors use the terms latent period and incubation period to mean the same period of time. Patients with an infectious disease during its incubation period may or may not be contagious depending upon the characteristics of the specific disease. 

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Article information

rID: 74781
Section: Pathology
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:
  • Latent period
  • Incubation time
  • Incubation periods

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