Have you ever wished you could wake up one day with a foreign accent? How about transforming into a vampire, or perhaps a werewolf? Believe it or not, there are diseases which can make you experience these. They aren’t all pleasant, though, for they are mostly serious and incurable conditions. You might want to be grateful that your cold’s just giving you a headache and a runny nose, for these 10 diseases are so bizarre that you won’t believe they’re actual medical conditions.
10.Stone Man Syndrome
The stone man syndrome, or fibrodysplasia ossificans progressiva, is a rare disorder which causes all damaged tissue to be replaced with bone. Due to a genetic mutation in the body’s repair mechanism, even muscles, ligaments, and tendons become replaced with bone as they are being repaired.
They say laughter is the best medicine, but this disease practically makes you die from laughter. The Kuru disease is a neurological condition which causes uncontrollable laughter, constant tremors, and joint spasms, and in the advanced stages, leads to a loss of body control and death.
8.Tree Man Syndrome
The tree man syndrome is caused by abnormal hypersensitivity to HPV (human papillomavirus) infections, which causes scaly, bark-like lesions to develop on the skin. Normally, HPV infections are asymptomatic (which means there are no noticeable symptoms), but individuals with this genetic disorder are not able to control the infection leading to the manifestation of its symptoms.
Progeria is a medical illness caused by a random genetic mutation, leading to premature aging. Individuals with progeria age around five times faster than the average person and are typically small, hairless, wrinkled, and have a frail physique. They have short lifespans (up to 20 years) due to the rapid aging of their internal organs.
6.Foreign Accent Syndrome
People afflicted with the foreign accent syndrome appear to develop a foreign accent after suffering a stroke, severe migraine, or head trauma. The condition is said to be caused by an injury in specific areas of the brain that coordinate speech and linguistic functions. The condition is permanent, and can only be treated through years of speech therapy.
5.Guinea Worm Disease
An individual drinks water with Guinea worm larva, the larva develops into a worm inside his body, and a year later, the worm wriggles out of person’s skin. This is basically Guinea worm disease, and as gruesome as it sounds, the worm does emerge from the skin after nourishing itself in the host’s body for about a year.
4.Walking Corpse Syndrome
Also known as Cotard’s Delusion, the walking corpse syndrome is a psychological disorder which leads people into believing that they are devoid of blood, missing their internal organs, or completely dead even if they are well and alive. The condition is believed to arise from the area of the brain in charge of face recognition, which is why most cases involve denial of self-existence followed by the assumption of being dead.
The African trypanosomiasis or sleeping sickness is a parasitic disease which causes pain, fever, and joint aches. The parasite works its way to the brain and as the disease progresses, the affected individual’s sleeping pattern is altered. Eventually, the individual will enter a deep sleep and not wake up, leading to coma and death.
You’d be surprised that there’s an actual disease whose symptoms mimic the characteristics of a vampire — except it doesn’t grant immortality. Porphyria is a condition resulting to hypersensitivity to sunlight, aversion to acidic foods (such as garlic), and receding gums, which make the teeth look like fangs. Porphyria can be controlled with regular blood transfusions, though patients get to keep their vampire-like appearance.
If there’s a syndrome for vampires, there’s also one for their sworn enemies — the werewolf syndrome. Hypertrichosis or werewolf syndrome is characterized by abnormal hair growth in most parts of the body, leading to a “wolf-like” appearance. This condition may be congenital or acquired later in life — possibly through hair growth enhancers. Like the vampire syndrome, historians believe that this condition is the basis of the mythical werewolf.