Hi all: I know it's not technically home repair but I figured some of
you might be able to help out.
I'm a reporter working on a story about recent research that shows old
pillows are full of fungus. Ick.
Anyone out there with any icky old pillow stories? Or have you been
meaning to buy new guest-room pillows for the last few decades? I'd
love to speak with you.
Feel free to post back to the board or e-mail me directly.
Best Regards, Dru
How much of this article is going to reflect what our ancestors used
before we had modern health measures and damp proof floors?
Sleeping in last year's hay, on an earth floor was probably seen as a
vast improvement to sleeping on grass, in the rain and frost I suppose.
Here's the research:
I'm still pondering exactly where the story will go. But I think
consumers probably are wondering if they need to replace pillows and if
so how often...
Duh. Smell the pillow. If you don't like the smell,
either clean it, or replace it. Strangely enough,
with the exception of the japanese and certain segments
of American society, this works for underwear, too.
I must be very lucky to have lived the last 57 years using pillows and I
am not dead yet.
I hate to tell you this, but your carpet is also full of fungus, as are
your sheets, mattress etc. The world is full of fungus.
There are some areas where it becomes especially troublesome, like a
hospital with those who have serious problems with their immune systems.
Other than that, I would not get all worried.
Any questionable pillows I have go to the laundromat, into those huge front
loading machines...with bleach, and then into those huge dryers set on the
highest/hottest setting, with an old, clean sneaker. I'm then confident my
pillows are pretty much germ, fungus, or whatever-free...
On 17 Oct 2005 10:52:08 -0700, firstname.lastname@example.org wrote:
And so you stop there? You're either a troll or stupid. Go away.
Donors to this "trust":
1. Fujisawa Corporation - A pharmecutical company.
2. Oxford Glycosciences - A bio technology company.
3. F2G Ltd - Start-up company that specialises in the research and
development for new treatments for serious fungal infections in man...
4.Chronic Granulomatous Disorder Research trust - A disease which
affects 1 in every 1,000,000 people.
5. Aventis - The sanofi-aventis Group is the world's 3rd largest
pharmaceutical company, ranking number 1 in Europe.
Are you starting to see a pattern here? Hint; Fungus was around before
mankind. These people are just trying to make money by scaring people.
If you don't see that then you need to have your ass fired for
Let's get this straight. The research suggests the obvious: Pillows become
fungus farms after a while. This would suggest to most sentient beings that
it might be a good idea to either clean or replace their pillows
The sale of more pillows benefits pharmaceutical companies....how???
Seriously - let's say you're the world's foremost hypochondriac, but
otherwise healthy. You go to your doctor and tell her you're convinced
you're deathly ill because of your pillow. Your doctor's probably going to
write you a prescription for a bottle of bourbon and a new pillow.
Believe this stuff? You're assuming the research is falsified? It did NOT
find what it said it did?
As far as doctors and prescriptions, anyone who doesn't ask questions of
their doctor when meds are prescribed.....I'll finish this with your words:
"And so you stop there? You're either a troll or stupid. Go away."
Most fungus is harmless and essential to life. We only react to it when we
are shown biased depictions like magnified views of our skin and told that
millions inhabit our pillows (without the context that this is completely
normal). A benign fungus may in fact prevent a toxic fungus from
Each person chooses a level of hygiene that they are comfortable with. I am
sure your story will sell well to certain crowds like woman's magazines and
health related publications (like the stuff in the doctors waiting room) but
will be trite to the general newsreading public. Afterall pillow articles
have got to be all fluff :) The information might help people choose
between feather, cotton or polyester fabric and filling materials. In any
case, it should not overly represent the fungus data.
Some research is really just obvious stuff that hasn't been technically
documented yet. The researchers may have been just studying anything they
could get a grant on and can write a paper about, there may or may not have
been an agenda. Some people are always suspicious of basic research and
compulsively look at the sponsors to concoct a conspiracy theory about it.
Most basic research scientists, like journalists make great efforts to
separate their work from the money that pays for it
I think most people are motivated to buy a new pillow when several factors
intersect; They notice that it is discolored or smelly, that it is not so
fluffy anymore, are at a store and happen to walk into the pillow isle, and
have sufficient disposable income to upgrade the pillow this month. Either
that or they have a specific need for a new one.
In any case, the sudden realization that the fungus that crawls over your
body and floats in the air we breethe all day long has transferred to your
pillow should not be a surprise to anyone. I would not replace a pillow
that looked clean and serviceable just because some research said that after
1 year or so I had X amount of fungus inside.
The real opportunity here is for antifungal fabrics to make pillows out of
or make pillowcases or other bedding. Already these coatings are appearing
in other hard surfaced products like countertops (microban for example).
So far I have not seen any indication that all this fungus has been
scientifically connected to a common problem. Considering how many people
use pillows if there was a problem, I would expect there to be some
connection, yet all I noticed was a few weak unsupported inferences.
Sorry to have caused such consternation here. The research is simply a
starting point for a story.
Nope, I'm not a troll, I'm a features reporter who likes writing quirky
stories. I'm not looking for some big investigation into funding of
scientific research, and certainly didn't mean to get anyone on this
Again, my apologies. Goodbye.
Oh for heaven's sake. As I explained, *it's a jumping off point*, a
I have BA in journalism, I've been in newspapers since 1982 (well,
before if you count college and high school) and have since then worked
at numerous papers including USA Today.
More on me in the link I posted in my original query:
Again, sorry to upset anyone.
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