For most people, hiccups are usually a temporary annoyance. But for a man in England, having the hiccups has been a constant battle for nearly two years.
Christopher Sands has struggled to sleep, eat and hold down food for 22 months.
He has puzzled doctors who say there is no physical reason why he should hiccup up to once every two seconds and is now set to have surgery on his stomach valve to stop him vomiting after eating.
The 25-year-old musician is unable to sing or perform with his band, Ebullient, and has poured out his frustration on his MySpace blog.
"Just recently I have been bringing every meal I eat back up again, I am starting to feel quite weak and my trousers all need belts now, so I made a visit to the doctor's, explained everything to her," he posted.
Other entries describe the rounds of doctors' visits, and how even a tube inserted through his nose failed to diagnose or help the problem.
"I still have them and they aren't getting any better," he wrote.
Sands has tried medicine, alternative therapies and old-wives' tales, but none has worked since the constant hiccups started in February 2007.
Hiccups are an unintentional contraction of your diaphragm — the muscle that separates your chest from your abdomen and plays an important role in breathing, according to the Mayo Clinic.
While hiccups usually go away on their own, in rare cases they may last for more than 48 hours. If this happens, it may be time to see a doctor, the Mayo Clinic said on its Web site.