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Photograph: CC/Flickr/Eva Vincent

Spring-like weather means an early start to Chicago's allergy season

Written by
Jonathan Samples

Chicagoans are taking full advantage of February’s unseasonably warm weather, but record-high temperatures this early in the year have a downside: allergies. This week, Dr. Joseph Leija of Gottlieb Memorial Hospital released the hospital’s first allergy report of 2017, and he says the outlook is not good for people who suffer from these annoying springtime maladies.

“It’s going to be a bad season that’s for sure,” Leija told WGN on Tuesday. “Many people are complaining… because the pollinating of the trees has been tremendous due to the weather being warm." Currently, the biggest problems are mold (low) and tree pollen (moderate), which Leija says is very unusual for mid-February.

During allergy season (typically from April to October), Leija collects air samples from the roof of Gottlieb Professional Building every weekday morning. These samples are measured and used to produce daily allergy reports for the Chicago area, which are available on the hospital’s website or by calling 866-476-5536. Tuesday’s report was the earliest every released by Gottlieb, according to the hospital.

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