'Katrina Cough' Lingers in the Wake of Hurricane
Thu Nov 03 2005 21:27:07 ET
A large number of people along the Louisiana and Mississippi coasts are developing a condition dubbed ``Katrina cough,'' believed to be linked to mold and dust circulating in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, the LOS ANGELES TIMES reports on Friday.
Health officials are trying to determine how widespread the problem is, but suggest that it is popping up among people who have returned to storm-ravaged areas, particularly New Orleans.
Dr. Dennis Casey, an ear, nose and throat doctor in New Orleans, called the condition ``very prevalent.'' And Dr. Kevin Jordan, director of medical affairs at Touro Infirmary and Memorial Medical Center in downtown New Orleans, said the hospital has seen at least a 25 percent increase in sinus headaches, congestion, runny noses and sore throats since Katrina.
In most cases, Casey said, patients appear to be ``allergic to the filth they are exposed to.'' Those allergies make the patients more susceptible to respiratory illness, including bacterial bronchitis and sinusitis.