25 October 2008

medical word of the day: coryza

I do have a week of words to make up for and I keep on coming across interesting ones.

Coryza: a head cold.

The word "coryza" came from the Greek "koryza" which is thought to have been compounded from "kara", head + "zeein", to boil. The "boiling over from the head" refers to the runny nose, an all-too-familiar feature of a head cold.

Now when you have a simple cold you can call in sick and say that you have coryza. Your coworkers will think you have something really serious while you spend your day sipping chicken noodle soup and watching Ellen reruns.

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