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September 23, 2008
I've had persistent sinus problems since my early teens—stuffiness, decreased sense of smell, facial pressure, and pain—that my doctors say are tied to my severe allergies. And every few months, I get a nasty acute sinus infection that calls for a couple of rounds of antibiotics. I've also long coped with a chronic condition called fibromyalgia, characterized by muscle pain and fatigue and triggered, I'm told, by a 1996 car accident.
Until this week, it never occurred to me that the symptoms I've experienced since that car accident might be linked to what keeps happening in my nose. My ear, nose, and throat doctor, allergist, and primary-care doctor always ask about facial pressure and pain when I seek treatment for sinus problems, but I don't recall any of them ever asking how my back and knees were feeling at the time. Now, new research suggests that chronic sinus problems may be linked to body pain and fatigue.
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September 19, 2008
After covering the controversy this week over bisphenol A, a chemical found in such things as hard plastic baby bottles and the lining of infant formula cans, I couldn't help but make the comparison with the milk tragedy occurring in China. According to Reuters's last count, 6,244 children have become ill, with four dead and 158 suffering acute kidney failure from drinking formula laced with another plastic material called melamine. Chinese parents are in a justified state of panic, rushing their babies to emergency rooms for ultrasounds of their kidneys, while supermarket managers pull milk and yogurt from shelves after the chemical was found in fresh milk as well as the powdered kind added to formulas.