Strange Malady
Woman's Era|April 2021
Mysterious diseases you never knew existed.
Shalini Bhardwaj

Have you ever thought that a relaxing bath can cause burning pain all over the body or a burst of deep laughter could literally be fatal? No, this is not a bizarre jest, but an unpleasant reality for few people, a kind of rare disease. The world is a queer place and many medical conditions can throw people for a loop.

Rare diseases also referred to as orphan diseases, are mostly genetic diseases and appear early in life. These diseases affect a small percentage of the population all over the world and remain present throughout the person’s entire life. Unfortunately, there is still no definite cure for most of these diseases. Many of us are not aware that the last day of February each year is marked as Rare Disease Day to raise awareness among the public, policymakers, researchers, and health professionals about these diseases and empathise them with people who are affected by these diseases.

Here are eight strange diseases you never knew existed:

1.Alice in the wonderland syndrome

Alice in Wonderland syndrome also known as Todd’s syndrome is a rare condition that temporarily changes how the brain perceives things.

The syndrome associated with migraine headaches is named after Lewis Carroll’s book, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, in which the protagonist, Alice, experiences the same kind of situations to those that occur to the sufferers of this syndrome. This rare neurological disorder is characterized by distortions of visual perception, body image, and the experience of time. As sufferers may see things smaller than they are, feel their body size altered. The individual also loses a sense of time and some experience strong hallucinations (visualising things that are not there). The condition, also known as micropsia or Lilliput sight, can also affect the sense of hearing and touch. Most common perceptions occur at night. The syndrome can affect people at any age, but it mainly occurs in children and adolescents. The episodes of AIWS are temporary and generally considered harmless in nature.

2.Water allergy

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