Why did I smell of jasmine when I was ill with psittacosis?

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Offline thedoc

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Marsha asked the Naked Scientists:

Years ago, I contacted psittacosis. I was kept in an isolation unit until medicos discovered the source of my illness. Final diagnosis was not reached until approximately two weeks of my presenting, at my GPs direction, at the hospital.

At this point, I had been ill for approximately 3-4 weeks, and was at a stage where I had developed sever upper left lobe pneumonia, with the right lung also affected, my hair was falling out, I has a persistent and excruciating cough, pleurisy etc... not in a great way, to say the least.

Whilst in isolation, my condition deteriorated and my system commenced a slow shut down. At this juncture, I began to notice that everything I consumed had the strong, an intensely overpowering aroma... to the point of scent...of jasmine. In fact, all possible flavours were entirely subsumed by Jasmine. It's all that I could taste, all that I could smell...when I respired...I could smell Jasmine.

It was incessant and lasted for approximately three weeks. At first, I was dismissed by others as somewhat fanciful, in that they could not detect the scent of Jasmine in the air, or in food etc..However, within four to five days of this commencing, my partner suddenly stated, after giving me a lovely kiss on the lips, that he could both taste and smell Jasmine. From that point on, whenever I spoke (or indeed kissed my partner on the lips), the scent of Jasmine could be detected by others. It was so intense, that I felt as though I was emitting the scent from every pore. As I progressively recovered, the sensation gradually diminished until it was but an odd recollection.

I hope that you may be able to assist with an explanation as to why, and by what process(es), this may have occurred?

What do you think?
« Last Edit: 22/02/2016 13:45:04 by chris »


Offline RD

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If others really could smell it too, then possibly due to the antibiotic medication you were taking to treat the infection,
(can be ruled out if the odour preceded the treatment).

If only you could smell this pleasant smell (euosmia) the medication or the infection could be responsible.
« Last Edit: 09/10/2013 03:37:05 by RD »