Rapid increase in scrub typhus incidence in Mainland China, 2006-2014

Yi Cheng Wu, Quan Qian, Ricardo J.Soares Magalhaes, Zhi Hai Han, Ubydul Haque, Thomas A. Weppelmann, Wen Biao Hu, Yun Xi Liu, Yan Song Sun, Wen Yi Zhang, Shen Long Li

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35 Scopus citations


Scrub typhus is a vector-borne disease, which has recently reemerged in China. In this study, we describe the distribution and incidence of scrub typhus cases in China from 2006 to 2014 and quantify differences in scrub typhus cases with respect to sex, age, and occupation. The results of our study indicate that the annual incidence of scrub typhus has increased during the study period. The number of cases peaked in 2014, which was 12.8 times greater than the number of cases reported in 2006. Most (77.97%) of the cases were reported in five provinces (Guangdong, Yunnan, Anhui, Fujian, and Shandong). Our study also demonstrates that the incidence rate of scrub typhus was significantly higher in females compared to males (P < 0.001) and was highest in the 60-69 year age group, and that farmers had a higher incidence rate than nonfarmers (P < 0.001). Different seasonal trends were identified in the number of reported cases between the northern and southern provinces of China. These findings not only demonstrate that China has experienced a large increase in scrub typhus incidence, but also document an expansion in the geographic distribution throughout the country.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)532-536
Number of pages5
JournalAmerican Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2016


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