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Saturday, December 18, 2021

Do you crave ice cubes? Compulsively chew on the ice in your drink? Then you might have pagophagia, a symptom of iron-deficient anemia.

One of the commenters on Kevin, M.D.’s post noted that he’d never remember the term “pagophagia” (and he’s a med student!). If you speak the Greek, like I do, it’s pretty easy to remember: “Pago” is the Greek word for “ice", and “phagia” is related to the root verb “to eat". So it’s simple like that.

I have a friend who used to make an annoying habit out of eating ice. I don’t think he ever raided the freezer for cubes, but without fail, he’d munch on the leftover ice in his drinks. We used to rag on him about it, making up nonsense like how it would erode his tooth enamel over time. Now, I wonder if he didn’t have a touch of anemia.

- Costa Tsiokos, Sat 12/18/2004 05:11:19 PM
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