Noxzema solves problem of persistent itchy nose


Health & Fitness

August 22, 2004|By Joe Graedon and Teresa Graedon | Joe Graedon and Teresa Graedon,King Features Syndicate

Many thanks to whoever wrote about Noxzema for itchy skin. IM-Fve been plagued for more than four years with a horrible itch on one side of my nose. It might seem laughable, but itM-Fs not so funny if youM-Fre scratching day and night, and one side of your nose is getting more and more inflamed.

My doctor finally referred me to a dermatologist, who didnM-Ft know what to say and, with pessimism, prescribed Nizoral cream. He was right: It didnM-Ft work.

Then I saw your column. The next day I bought Noxzema, applied a dab and presto! The itch disappeared. ItM-Fs fantastic. ItM-Fs too early to know whether the effect will last, but I want to help other people just as I have been helped.

Thanks for telling us about your experience. Noxzema contains camphor, menthol and eucalyptus. These herbal extracts seem to have anti-fungal properties, but they might also have an impact on itch or pain receptors. According to the company, Noxzema was named in 1914 after a patient declared, M-tYou knocked my eczema!M-v

Have you heard of using Pepto- Bismol for relief of gastric ulcers? It was suggested to me, but I read that Pepto-Bismol interacts with Coumadin. Does it increase or decrease the effectiveness of this blood thinner? What else do I need to watch out for?

Gastritis and many stomach ulcers can be caused by a germ called Helicobacter pylori. They might be cured by a combination of antibiotics and Pepto-Bismol to eradicate the bacteria.

A person taking Coumadin should not take Pepto-Bismol, however. Pepto contains bismuth subsalicylate. It is the M-tsalicylateM-v that can interact with Coumadin much as aspirin can, making bleeding more likely.

I am in my 40s and have had a problem with my hands and feet sweating excessively all my life. IM-Fve heard there is surgery to control this problem, but that seems extreme. Are there any other options?

Surgery can be effective, but it is expensive and requires general anesthesia. The Food and Drug Administration just approved Botox for use in treating excessive underarm sweating. Such injections have been used to control sweaty palms and feet. It makes sense, though, to try topical aluminum chloride first. Available in products such as Drysol, it is far less costly and less invasive than surgery or injections and can be quite effective.

I heard on the radio about a drug that helps against ringing in the ears. I donM-Ft remember the name of the medicine or what it is normally used for. Can you tell me about it?

A small study found that misoprostol (Cytotec), a drug used to protect the digestive tract from ulcers, reduced the symptoms of tinnitus, or ringing in the ears (Otolaryngology M-y Head & Neck Surgery, May 2004). Patients taking Cytotec were more likely to report that the ringing was diminished and less disruptive. Further research is needed to confirm that Cytotec can help this disorder. The FDA has not approved any drugs for treating tinnitus.

In their column, Joe and Teresa Graedon answer letters from readers. Write to them in care of King Features Syndicate, 888 Seventh Ave., New York, NY 10019, or e-mail them through their Web site, www.peoples

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