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Putting The Brakes On Hiccups

by VR Sreeraman on August 3, 2007 at 8:10 PM
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Putting The Brakes On Hiccups

The cause, functioning and cure of hiccups has baffled medical practitioners since ages.

Although no one has figured out the exact science behind these "abrupt diaphragmatic contractions," some silly cures, like breathe into paper bags, swallow air, blow on your thumb, burp, stand on your head etc., have been put forth by various people.

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But, now Philip Charles Ehlinger, Jr., has invented a device than can effectively halt hiccups.

"Hiccups lasting up to 48 hours are classified as 'bouts.' Hiccups lasting longer than 48 hours are called 'persistent.' Those lasting longer than a month are called 'intractable," Live Science quoted Ehlinger, as saying.
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"Hiccups lasting longer than a month! I would call that a living nightmare! At this point, sufferers may resort to more extreme measures such as inducing vomiting, or applying traction on the tongue or pressure on the eyeballs," he added.

Thus faced with the above mentioned options the inventor created a device, which is a metallic cup with one electrode making contact with your cheek and another electrode making contact with your temple.

When the cup is full of water and you start drinkin, an electrical circuit is created, thus stimulating the vagus and phrenic nerves and "reliably interrupting the Hiccup Reflexive Arc."

Source: ANI
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