Dengue fever, a potentially fatal, mosquito-borne disease, will be on the minds of many Guangdong residents in the coming months, after a large number of cases were reported in July, said an expert with the provincial center for disease control and prevention.
Eighty-five cases had been reported in July by Monday, although none of them were serious, according to the provincial health department.
The figure represents a big jump from seven in the same month last year, with just three in July 2011 and one in July 2010.
Over the same three-year period, though, October has proved the worst month, with 185 cases in 2012, 22 in 2011 and 66 in 2010.
"Dengue fever occurs mainly between July and November in Guangdong," said He Jianfeng, an expert from the disease control and prevention center.
"Some Southeast Asian countries, including Thailand, Vietnam and Malaysia, have had worse outbreaks this year. It is the rainy weather since late June and the subtropical summer temperatures in Guangdong that have helped mosquitoes to breed in large numbers."I well recall the mosquitoes of the Guangzhou suburb where my wife and I taught in 1983. They came in various species, from the big, slow ones the Chinese called "bombers" to small, silent ones that feasted on your ankles before you even knew they were there. Mosquito nets were absolutely essential. And in hindsight, my wife and kids and I were lucky not to have fallen ill more than we did.