incubation period


Definition of incubation period

: the period between the infection of an individual by a pathogen and the manifestation of the illness or disease it causes

Examples of incubation period in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

The incubation period for the bacteria is between one and 10 days with most cases declaring themselves in somewhere between two and four days. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Animal exhibits closed at fair following E.coli death of 2-year-old boy," 29 June 2019 At Texas' Harris County jail, the first case appeared around May 17, and the other cases came along a couple weeks later, as would be expected with the virus's 12- to 25-day incubation period, Persse said. Jason Hanna And Doug Criss, CNN, "300 inmates in Texas' Harris County jail are quarantined over a mumps outbreak," 13 June 2019 The incubation period — the time between infection and when a person begins to show symptoms — is two to 21 days, according to WHO. NBC News, "What is Ebola? What to know about symptoms, vaccine, outbreaks," 12 June 2019 On the other hand, their work highlights that current ideas about the distribution of incubation periods don’t always hold up well to mathematical scrutiny either. Quanta Magazine, "Why Don’t Patients Get Sick in Sync? Modelers Find Statistical Clues," 1 Mar. 2018 After a month-long incubation period, three eggs hatched from one nest and one egg hatched from a second. Raquel Baier, azcentral, "4 pygmy-owls hatch at Phoenix Zoo as part of conservation program," 6 June 2019 If one person in a housing unit tests positive for an infectious disease like mumps, ICE often quarantines the entire group for the duration of the incubation period, which is about 26 days, immigration attorneys and health officials told Quartz. Justin Rohrlich, Quartz, "ICE is struggling to contain spread of mumps in its detention centers," 3 June 2019 Nonetheless, the outbreak will not officially be declared over until at least one more 21-day incubation period has passed, and the Congolese health ministry will continue surveillance after that. New York Times, "Ebola Outbreak in Central Africa Is ‘Largely Contained’," 28 June 2018 The strangely simultaneous outbreaks are both officially over, as of Monday, when there had been no new cases in 42 days, or two full incubation periods. Andy Marso, kansascity, "Kansas City's two measles outbreaks are over. But what did they cost taxpayers?," 11 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'incubation period.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of incubation period

1879, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

16 Jul 2019

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The first known use of incubation period was in 1879

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incubation period


Medical Definition of incubation period

: the period between the infection of an individual by a pathogen and the manifestation of the disease it causes Mono, which has an incubation period of 30 to 50 days, characteristically announces itself with headaches, fever, sore throat, tonsillitis, and extreme fatigue.Your Health & Fitness, October/November 1986 Quarantines worked to control the SARS epidemic because SARS is much less contagious than flu and has a longer incubation period.— Christine Gorman, Time, 17 Oct. 1995

More from Merriam-Webster on incubation period

Britannica English: Translation of incubation period for Arabic Speakers

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