List of epidemics

This is a list of the largest known epidemics and pandemics caused by an infectious disease. Widespread non-communicable diseases such as cardiovascular disease and cancer are not included. An epidemic is the rapid spread of disease to a large number of people in a given population within a short period of time; in meningococcal infections, an attack rate in excess of 15 cases per 100,000 people for two consecutive weeks is considered an epidemic.Due to the long time spans, the first plague pandemic (6th century–8th century) and the second plague pandemic (14th century–early 19th century) are shown by individual outbreaks, such as the Plague of Justinian (first pandemic) and the Black Death (second pandemic).


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