Definition of latent period in English:

Share this entry

latent period

noun

1 Medicine The period between infection with a virus or other microorganism and the onset of symptoms, or between exposure to radiation and the appearance of a cancer.
Example sentences
  • It is generally assumed that episodes of brain cancer that appear after latent periods of less than 10 years are merely coincidental associations, not sentinel indicators of causation.
  • As with tobacco, there will be a latent period between the onset of smoking and the development of lung damage, cardiovascular disease, or malignant change.
  • There is a long latent period of 20-40 years between exposure and disease expression.
2 Physiology The delay between the receipt of a stimulus by a sensory nerve and the response to it.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: la·tent pe·ri·od

Share this entry
 

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.