HEALTH Allergies

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Advantages Cleo, above, has over a real cat are that the robo-cat does not have to be fed or cleaned up after, like the frisky cloned kittens Tabouli and Baba Ganoush, top right, with Genetic Savings & Clone chief executive Lou Hawthorne last year. GS& C chief scientific officer Philip Damiani, right, is working to meet a deadline for cloning a dog. "I feel the pressure every day when I come to work," Damiani says. (Susan Biddle -- The Washington Post)
Allergies or a Cold?

Allergies affect between 40 and 50 million people in the United States. While seasonal allergies may come and go, perennial allergy sufferers deal with stuffy or runny noses, itchy eyes, sneezing, and wheezing 365 days a year.

While colds and allergies share the common symptoms of a runny, stuffy nose, sneezing and scratchy throat, there are still some major differences between the two:

Colds result a virus infection. Symptoms may also include a fever and aches and pains along with allergy symptoms. Usually takes a few days to hit full force. Symptoms should clear up within several days to a week.

Allergy symptoms begin almost immediately after exposure to an allergen. Symptoms last as long as they are exposed to the allergen or longer. If the allergen is present year-round, symptoms may be chronic.

SOURCE: American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology

Web Resources
Web Links American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology
 National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases
 Food Allergy Network
Purr. Whirr. 
Mecho-pets such as the catbot is easier for many people -- the elderly, the allergy-stricken, the autistic and disabled children and adults -- to relate to than a real cat.

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