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Question #1547 posted on 11/20/2003 4:02 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,
Just wondering, what are the symptoms of pneumonoultramicroscopicsilacovolcanoconeosis, and how do you get it?
- Needs to get a life

A: Dear lifeless,

The symptoms of pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosis include violent coughing, persistent vomiting, and severe, unstoppable bowel movements. You can avoid getting it by not breathing in ultramicroscopic silicate or quartz dust.

- The Webmaster

P.S. - Pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosis is only a hypothetical disease, created as an example of how biological terminoligy works. So yes, I made up the symptoms. See http://biology.about.com/library/weekly/aa021902a.htm for a nice dissection of the word.