Feet First

“It is much more important to know what sort of a patient has a disease than what sort of a disease a patient has.” - Sir William Osler

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    Wednesday, October 15, 2003
    Somebody Give This Poor Woman Some Iron, STAT!

    From the Ananova news service:

    Chinese Woman Eats Dirt

    A 78-year-old Chinese woman has reportedly eaten approximately 10 tons of soil over the past 70 years.

    Hao Fenglan, from Zhangwu county, northern China, began eating mud and dirt at the age of eight.

    She says she feels physical discomfort if she does not eat dirt at least once a day, reports the South China Morning Post.

    The diet has done her little apparent harm and she is in good health.

    This phenomenon is called "pica." It is a symptom of anemia. I'd be willing to bet this woman has been anemic her entire life. I don't even want to think about what her parasite load must be after 65 years of eating dirt in China...



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