Each Disorder Has Its Own Smell


According to experts, some diseases can be diagnosed by the smell. So, if a person’s breath smells like a nail polish remover, the person is likely to suffer from diabetes.

The Sensors magazine has published the results of the research conducted by the scientists from Monell Chemical Senses Center in Philadelphia, who had found that many human diseases could be identified by the smell. Thus, the smell from the mouth in case of renal failure resembles that of raw fish, and infections of the bladder make the patient’s urine smell of ammonia.

In case of rubella, human sweat starts to smell of feathers, and even schizophrenia has its own smell – the patient’s sweat has the smell of vinegar. Typhoid makes the patient’s skin smell like freshly baked bread. Finally, yellow fever makes the skin smell like sausage or a butcher’s shop, whereas the infections of the lymph nodes smell of beer.

The researchers emphasize that not all smells can be recognized with the help of a nose, but they believe that this can be done by a special machine. Smells of diseases can be quite well recognized by dogs, and some studies have shown that our four-legged friends can even recognize the signs of malignant tumors by smell.

Researchers tested one of such machines that could “sniff” breast cancer. Its accuracy was as high as that of a mammogram. The study also mentioned a woman named Joanna, who remembered the smell of her husband when he had prostate cancer. When she felt the same smell of decomposition from her own body, she immediately rushed to the hospital, where she was diagnosed with a lung cancer. The disease was cured in time, and the smell immediately disappeared.