It is possible that Hogwarts students could bring Muggle illnesses (e.g. cold, flu, etc.) from outside (e.g. during holiday break), which would then likely spread rapidly through Hogwarts.

Are there any cases of Muggle illnesses in Harry Potter?

  • 12
    Those are human illnesses, not muggle illnesses…
    – Bergi
    Jan 16 at 10:08
  • 10
    @Bergi That's what the question is about. It's not implausible that wizards would be immune to our common illnesses because of magic flowing in their veins and killing viruses or other handwavium. Jan 16 at 11:30
  • 7
    @Bergi since wizards are totally oblivious to the concept of a dentist (c.f.r. HBP), it's not unthinkable that they are also not aware (and thus not susceptible) to things you would visit a doctor for.
    – Opifex
    Jan 16 at 12:53
  • 1
    @MichaelRichardson definitely possible. I haven't seen it myself, but it's known that movie adaptations of books aren't known for their consistency.
    – Opifex
    Jan 17 at 10:09
  • 1
    Does this answer your question? What do wizards in Muggle wheelchairs do if they go to Hogwarts?
    – Ongo
    Jan 17 at 22:27

2 Answers 2


Chamber of Secrets Chapter Eight:

October arrived, spreading a damp chill over the grounds and into the castle. Madam Pomfrey, the nurse, was kept busy by a sudden spate of colds among the staff and students.

  • 12
    My understanding is, yes, they get sick with non-magical illness... but they also have magical cures for most of these that are far more effective. While not exactly an illness, we see the ability to regrow bones in a night instead of several weeks as one example. So Madam Pomfrey was busy because she's one person for lots of students, but it's less clear any single student was long inconvenienced. This magical advantage against the mundane is necessary, because magical creatures (including Witches/Wizards) are also prone to magical illness, which may require stronger treatments. Jan 16 at 21:13
  • 7
    @JoelCoehoorn Indeed, the very next sentence is: Her Pepperup Potion worked instantly, though it left the drinker smoking at the ears for several hours afterward.
    – Alex
    Jan 17 at 12:19
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    @JoelCoehoorn Note that the overnight bone regrowing exhibited in the second book is way more than we can do with muggle medicine, as Harry had actually lost all the bone in his arm. Healing a broken bone (which is what would commonly take us muggles several weeks) she can do in a minute, as referenced both in her rant in that very incident, and also her healing of Neville's arm after the flying lessons in the first book.
    – Arthur
    Jan 17 at 13:12

Wizards can contract any illness the same as a Muggle can, but they can magically solve the problem rather easily...

I decided that, broadly speaking, wizards would have the power to correct or override ‘mundane’ nature, but not ‘magical’ nature. Therefore, a wizard could catch anything a Muggle might catch, but he could cure all of it; he would also comfortably survive a scorpion sting that might kill a Muggle, whereas he might die if bitten by a Venomous Tentacula. Similarly, bones broken in non-magical accidents such as falls or fist fights can be mended by magic, but the consequences of curses or backfiring magic could be serious, permanent or life-threatening.


Thus it can be seen that while wizards have an enviable head start over the rest of us in dealing with the flu, and all manner of serious injuries, they have to deal with problems that the rest of us never face.

Illness and Disability, By J.K. Rowling, Originally published on Pottermore on Aug 10th 2015

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