Differences Between Acute disease and Chronic Disease

What is Acute disease?

Acute illness is a condition or disorder that develops or manifests rapidly and lasts for shorter amount of time.

The duration of time that is for acute diseases is dependent according to the nature of the disease and its context however it is more concise in comparison to chronic illnesses. The term “acute” can also be used to refer to conditions where the onset of symptoms is sudden and happens quickly. In the case of severe disease is usually fulminant when it’s not always true for acute rhinitis. It is commonly associated with the common cold.


But, illnesses such as acute respiratory illnesses are usually serious and have devastating effects. Acute illnesses are usually caused due to an agent that is infectious which is why acute conditions are seen in a variety of communicable illnesses. Alongside the sudden appearance of the disease acute illnesses also get worse faster than chronic diseases.

Acute illnesses can cause or affect every system of the body. But they are only affecting one particular system at a time. The treatment for acute illnesses is also different based on the severity of the illness. Apendicitis is one of the most acute diseases. influenza, and strep throat don’t require hospitalization or medical attention in the extreme. Contrarily, illnesses such as pneumonia and acute myocardial infarction (heart attack) even though they are urgent, require immediate medical attention and a long-term treatment.


These illnesses also do not typically have long-term negative effects on health and can be dealt with one-time and completely. Sometimes, the illness could be the result of a minor alteration in diet such as typhoid. This can be caused due to drinking contaminated water. This can easily be prevented by choosing an alternative source of water that is cleaner.

Examples of acute diseases


Typhoid is an acute illness that occurs as a consequence of the infection with the bacterium Salmonella Typhi. The time of incubation for the disease ranges from 8 days to a month, and the illness could last for up to one month. Typhoid can be transmitted through the consumption of water or foods contaminated by an affected person’s excrement. The symptoms are evident within a few days and typically consist of diarrhea and high fever. The symptoms are not as than severe, even though their severity may differ based on the condition of the immune system of patients.


The presence of typhoid is detected through tests for diagnosis like Widal testing, serology and immunoassays. There is a way to treat the disease through the intake of appropriate medications in the prescribed timeframe by the physician. The disease can be avoided by eating a balanced diet and keeping a clean and healthy environment.

Bone Fracture

Bone fractures are a serious condition in which the continuity of bones is broken or cracks develop within the bone. Bone fractures typically occur by tension or stress and can be seen in those with weak bones. There are many kinds of bone fractures such as avulsion, comminuted or hairline breaks. The majority of bone fractures occur with an accident of some kind. They can be detected through radiological examinations of the bones to determine the severity and type of bone fracture. The healing process of bone can be a normal process and the method of treating it is to ensure the best conditions that allows the healing process to occur itself.


What is Chronic disease?

Chronic disease is an illness that continues for a longer time or has lasting negative health consequences.

In acute diseases chronic illnesses are not identified by a particular amount of time. They are generally used when comparing them with acute illnesses. But, occasionally an illness that lasts for more than 3 months is considered to be a chronic disease. The term “terminal” is used to describe conditions that are chronic, with the highest likelihood of ending in death due to the lack of cures for them.


Chronic diseases are generally more difficult to treat when they advance and can be seen over the course of months or generally over a period of time. Chronic diseases affect a variety of organs and systems of the body, and aren’t always respond to treatment. Chronic diseases are typically caused by non-communicable illnesses since the causes are usually not infectious.

Many of these ailments aren’t caused by an infectious agent. They typically result from unhealthy lifestyles or poor health choices. These diseases are the result of unhealthy eating habits and behaviors that persist for a long time. Certain chronic illnesses may experience an interval of remissions or relapses, during which the illness may be absent temporarily.


The risk factors for chronic diseases differ for various diseases, however certain risk factors are dietary lifestyle, lifestyle, and metabolic factors. The severity of the majority of chronic diseases isn’t extreme. However, those suffering from chronic illnesses are more prone to developing fatal acute illnesses.

Because treatment is rarely efficient against chronic illness it is believed that prevention would be better. This can be accomplished by periodic screening for the presence of predisposing elements that aid in the early detection of problems, thereby cutting down on the negative outcomes.

Examples of chronic diseases


It is a chronic illness in which the glucose or the sugar level in the blood is greater than the normal.

Two types of diabetes exist;

  • Type 1 diabetes is a condition where the immune system of the body damages the body’s healthy cells, such as beta cells that produce insulin in the pancreas, assuming them as foreign invaders.
  • The 2 diabetes ccurs in the event that the body isn’t able to utilize insulin effectively, resulting in an rise in blood glucose levels.

The symptoms of diabetes aren’t evident and typically develop slowly over a time. When the signs are evident, signs of complications could be diagnosed as a result of the disease. The majority of people suffering from diabetes are older people and is often associated with poor dietary habits. It is not possible to cure this disease However, there are medications to treat the symptoms of the condition.


Cancer is a long-lasting condition which is comprised of a range of illnesses caused by the uncontrolled division of cells that has the possibility of spreading to various organs within the human body. The main causes of cancer include smoking or smoking, obesity, poor eating habits as well as a lack of physical exercise, and consumption of alcohol. Some cancers could result from the genetic disorder or condition of the individual. The symptoms include lumps and bleeding abnormally or weight loss rapid and a prolonged cough could be seen in a variety of cancers. They could also be due to other reasons. The most crucial test for diagnosing in the treatment of cancer involves a biopsy which is when a portion of the tissue is examined for identification the presence of tumorous cells. Like the majority of chronic illnesses, keeping an appropriate diet and regular exercise is a good option as a preventative measure against cancer.

Differences Between Acute disease and Chronic disease – Acute disease vs Chronic disease

Base for comparisonAcute diseasesChronic illnesses
DefinitionAcute disease refers to an illness or condition that develops or manifests quickly and lasts for shorter time.Chronic disease is an illness that lasts over a longer time or has lasting negative health consequences.
AppearanceThe most common symptoms of acute illness are sudden.The development of chronic illnesses are more gradual.
TimespanThe duration of acute diseases is shorter period of time than chronic illnesses.Chronic illnesses have a longer duration of time. Some may even last for a lifetime.
CausesForeign agents are the cause of the most severe conditions. Certain diseases may even manifest as a result of mishaps and improper use of medications.The causes of chronic illnesses aren’t always clear, but a bad lifestyle and diet can often trigger these illnesses.
NatureThe majority of acute illnesses are communicable and result from the presence of an agent that is infectious.The majority of chronic diseases are not transmissible because no infectious agent has been connected to the disease.
EffectsAcute illnesses do not cause adverse health effects.Because chronic diseases can last for longer periods of time and have long-lasting effects to the general health condition of the person.
RelapseThere aren’t any periods of recrudescence during the disease because the duration is much shorter.There may be multiple times of relapses during the course of the disease.
Onset of SymptomsAcute diseases are characterized by symptoms that are sudden and can worsen within a short time.Chronic diseases may not be evident for a lengthy time.
SymptomsThe symptoms of acute illnesses vary in accordance with the nature of the illness.The symptoms of chronic illnesses may be similar, and common signs like weight loss and breath shortness can be observed in a variety of chronic illnesses.
DiagnosisDiagnostic tests that are accurate are available for a variety of acute illnesses.Diagnostic tests that are accurate aren’t available for many chronic illnesses.
TreatmentIn acute cases, diseases can be treated entirely with the use of proper dosages of medicines.Chronic illnesses are seldom treated with medications. The majority of the medications for chronic illnesses only serve to prevent the condition from becoming worse. A prompt diagnosis of the disease could assist in reducing severe consequences.
PreventionDifferent preventive steps can be taken in the case of acute illnesses. The method of prevention may differ according to the type of disease.The development of better lifestyle, behavioral and dietary habits could be used to avoid chronic illnesses. Certain acute illnesses can develop into chronic, therefore the proper treatment for acute illnesses is also a way to prevent.
ExamplesTyphoid, Jaundice, Bone fracture, Burns, Heart attack, Cholera, etc.Diabetes, Cancer, Tuberculosis, Arthritis, etc.

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