Well? James Cave, Family Doctor 26 June 2008 Did the cough come back when you went back to Beijing? Competing interests None declared
26 June 2008
Did the cough come back when you went back to Beijing?
Return to Beijing but no return of my cough
30 June 2008
I returned to Beijing in May for two nights, but my cough did not return.
I arrived in the middle of the day and took a taxi to the hotel. The atmosphere was as murky as it was in January, but it was raining and I couldn't taste the air, as I could last time.
I stayed in a better one that I stayed in last time--which might be important as the air conditioning was probably better. I certainly didn't taste coal in the air in my hotel room, as I did last time.
Later in the afternoon I went for a walk for about 90 minutes in Tiannamen Square and the surrounds. It was still murky and raining.
The next day I attended a meeting all day at Peking University. Again I wasn't aware of pollution in the air.
The following day I left the hotel in mid-morning, took a taxi to the airport, and left in the early afternoon.
I didn't ever develop a cough. These I see as possible explanations:
1. My initial cough wasn't caused by pollution
2. Pollution levels seemed lower this time--partly perhaps because of the rain
3. I wasn't there long enough to develop symptoms
4. My hotel had better air conditioning than last time
I favour a mixture of 2 to 4.
I'm the editor of the journal, but I have no financial conflict of interest in this case report.