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Ask the Medical Expert Archives 2000-2004

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Week of February 18, 2002

    Question: I am 16 years old and I've used inhalants over five times in my life. I was wondering if this amount of usage greatly depletes my cognitive abilities or lowers my intelligence to a vast degree. I recently read the effects of such substances and want to know if this is going to affect me greatly.    Dr. McLaughlin's Answer

    Question: I am currently taking Synthroid for my underactive thyroid and have been taking it for about five years. I would like to know if there are any serious side effects of this medication because I have recently found out that it has not been approved by the FDA. I am seriously thinking of having my prescription changed as soon as possible to reduce the risks of any serious side effects. Please inform me of any serious side effects you know of as soon as possible.    Dr. McLaughlin's Answer

    Question:I am a nutritional biochemist and counsel clients with various food/weight related disorders. I am well aware of the effects of tobacco smoke on blood sugar. Can you tell me if second hand smoke also affects blood sugar? I have observed that non-smoking diabetics have better control over their blood sugar when they take precautions to avoid second hand smoke and I routinely advise patients to avoid prolonged exposure to tobacco smoke.    Dr. McLaughlin's Answer