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New toll-free EMS hotline.


In our March issue, we reported on eosinophilia-myalgia syndrome (EMS), a relatively new illness related to the use of food supplements containing L-tryptophan. Now there is a toll-free information line to provide callers with free information regarding EMS, as well as a referral service for physicians. The hotline (1-800-EMS-2829; 898-5611 for persons in the Washington, D.C., area) will operate Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Eastern time.

Health and Human Services Secretary Louis W. Sullivan has urged everyone to stop taking L-tryptopham supplements immediately. In March, the Food and Drug Administration recalled all products containing manufactured L-tryptophan. The substance had been sold as a nutritional supplement, but many consumers have used it to treat insomnia, premenstrual syndrome, weight loss, and depression. Experts estimate that as many as 5,000 cases may exist in the U.S. Symptoms of EMS include muscle pain, weakness, fever, fatigue, swelling, joint aches, and rash.
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Title Annotation:eosinophilia-myalgia syndrome
Publication:Medical Update
Date:Aug 1, 1990
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