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sensitivity


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n.1. (in microbiology) the degree to which a disease-causing organism responds to treatment by antibiotics or other drugs. 2. (in preventive medicine) a measure of the reliability of a screening test based on the proportion of people with a specific disease who react positively to the test (the higher the sensitivity the fewer false negatives). This contrasts with specificity, which is the proportion of people free from disease who react negatively to the test (i.e. the higher the specificity the fewer the false positives). Most screening tests operate such that if the sensitivity is increased the specificity is reduced and the proportion of false positives may rise to unacceptable proportions.

1. (in microbiology) the degree to which a disease-causing organism responds to treatment by antibiotics or other drugs. 2. (in preventive medicine) a measure of the reliability of a screening test based on the proportion of people with a specific disease who react positively to the test (the higher the sensitivity the fewer false negatives). This contrasts with specificity, which is the proportion of people free from disease who react negatively to the test (i.e. the higher the specificity the fewer the false positives). Most screening tests operate such that if the sensitivity is increased the specificity is reduced and the proportion of false positives may rise to unacceptable proportions.

Subjects: Medicine and Health.


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