Lo Down knew it all along, but now it's medically proven: karaoke is bad for your health. Loud singing and the lifestyle associated with frequenting K (as we say in Cantonese) such as smoking, drinking and not sleeping, not only irritates your vocal cords but could make them chronically inflamed. A University of Hong Kong study found the condition, which usually affects teachers and radio announcers, was increasing among karaoke fans. But the study, published in the British Medical Journal, neglected what may be called second-hand noise, which as we know from second-hand smoke, could be equally dangerous. I started paying attention to this overlooked issue when I recently attended a K session with a former boss who had a penchant for imitating Barry Gibb of the Bee Gees. In a separate study from South Korea, noise in K clubs is found to reach an average of 95 decibels, but could go as high as 115. This is equivalent to standing next to a busy building site. After these studies, I say the clubs should be forced to display health warning signs at their entrances.