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Snowflake, Arizona – A Desert Refuge for People Allergic to Modern Life

A tiny off-grid community in Snowflake, Arizona has become a refuge for people suffering from multiple chemical sensitivity (MCS). Often referred to as Environmental Illness, (EI), the condition is a chronic disorder in which exposure to everyday chemicals and technology causes symptoms of varying intensity.

Some of the symptoms of MCS are merely annoying and range from muscle pain to general fatigue. Others are reportedly crippling, such as intense nausea, migraines, sudden panic, and even vertigo. Sufferers claim that their symptoms coincide with exposure to chemicals and technologies around them, such as fragrances, synthetic fabrics, pesticides, and Wi-Fi. Most doctors hesitate to legitimise the condition, citing lack of scientific evidence, calling it a psycho-social condition with acute physical symptoms. For this reason, sufferers, who typically are self-diagnosed, often have difficulty finding medical help for the disease and have to resort to alternative treatments.

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Rare Condition Causes Man to Hear England’s National Anthem Playing in His Head on a Loop

An 87-year-old British pensioner has developed an oddly patriotic condition in which he hears an auditory hallucination of England’s national anthem playing in his head on a loop.

Ron Goldspink of Bilton hopes to meet Queen Elizabeth when she visits his town next month to tell her that he has heard the anthem even more frequently than she has. He suffers from a rare condition called Musical Ear Syndrome (MES) and mainly, which affects those suffering from hearing loss, causing them to develop non-psychiatric auditory hallucinations. The cause and mechanism  of MES are currently unknown, but researchers believe it occurs when there is a lack of auditory stimulation. Sensory deprivation causes the brain to begin manufacturing sound, hence why it is common among people suffering hearing loss. Although it is still underreported, MES is believed to affect approximately one in 10,000 people aged over 65 in the UK.

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This Boy Slept for 11 Days Straight and Doctors Have No Idea Why

7-year-old Wyatt Shaw, a 7-year-old boy from Elizabethtown, Kentucky, recently woke up from an 11-day slumber that left doctors scratching their heads. When he finally woke up, the second-grader had trouble speaking and moving around, but has since made good progress and is expected to make a full recovery.

After attending his aunt’s wedding and being the life of the party, Wyatt’s mother, Amy, expected him to sleep in the next day, but she never imagined that it would take 11 days for him to finally wake up. She tried waking him up several times, but Wyatt just couldn’t stay awake, and even though he sometimes opened his eyes, it just seemed like he wasn’t really aware of anything.

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Chinese University Requires Students to Lose Weight in Order to Receive Full Grades

In an attempt to tackle obesity on its campus, a university in Jiangsu, China, is offering overweight students the chance to enroll in a special weight-loss program, where they will receive their grades based on how much weight they shed and on how well they do in class.

Zhou Quanfu, a lecturer at the Nanjing Agriculture University, came up with the idea for the accredited weight loss program after learning that most of his overweight students didn’t exercise because they thought it was pointless. So he decided to motivate them by having their grades depend more on their physical shape than on their actual performance in school. Sixty per cent of each student’s grade is determined by how much weight they lose in a set period of time, with their curricular activity only accounting for 40 percent of the total score. Students enrolled in the program have to lose at least 7 percent of their original weight by the end of the semester in order to receive full grades.

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Woman Goes Blind in One Eye After Playing Mobile Video Game Almost Non-Stop

A 21-year-old woman from Dongguan, China, was recently diagnosed with with retinal artery obstruction in her right eye, after playing a popular smartphone game almost non-stop.

The woman, known only as Wu, apparently noticed that she couldn’t see anything with her right eye on October 1st, while playing her favorite mobile game, King of Glory. Thinking she was just tired, she went to bed, but when she woke up the next day, she was still blind in her right eye. Her parents took her to the hospital, where she was diagnosed with a serious condition known as retinal artery obstruction. This usually only occurs in older patients, but doctors said that Wu’s eyes were incredibly fatigued by the stressed of constantly staring into the small smartphone screen.

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Boy Accidentally Swallows Party Toy, Makes Hilarious Sound When He Inhales

Ever wonder what you would sound like if you had a party hooter stuck in your trachea? Well, thanks to a viral video posted by a doctor in Argentina, you don’t have to try it yourself to find out.

Dr Santiago Gomez Zuviria, of Tucuman, Argentina, recently had to operate on an 8-year-old boy who had accidentally swallowed a small party hooter. It had got stuck in his trachea, so surgery was the only way to remove it, but before carrying out the procedure, the Argentinian doctor decided to film the poor kid as he inhaled, and posted it on his Facebook page as a warning to parents. Little did he know that it would end up going viral, with more than 9 million views, at the time of this writing.

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If You’ve Tried Everything, This Guy Claims He Can Cure Your Illness with “Star Magic”

Do you have stubborn migraines that just won’t go away? Maybe you’ve recently been in an accident or contracted some life-threatening virus? Have you tried everything Western and Eastern medicine has to offer? Well, in that case, maybe you should look to the stars for your next treatment and give Jerry Sargeant a call. All you need is £90 (about $120), 15 minutes, and an open mind – the rest is up to Sergeant, or, as he prefers to be called “The Facilitator”.

It all started one day in Romania when Sargeant was in a life-affirming car accident. His taxi allegedly crashed into two women who were crossing the street. Sergeant claims that one woman came through the window – causing him to hit his head and the last thing he witnessed was “her soul hovering over her body”. This was apparently what kickstarted his abilities and awoken Sergeant to the healing powers that have always resided within him.

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Doctor Performs Colonoscopy on Himself to Better Understand Patients’ Pain

In order to better understand what his patients go through, Dr. Feng Zhuo, a deputy director of the Proctology Department at a Shanghai hospital, recently performed a 15-minute colonoscopy on himself.

Ask anyone who’s ever had a colonoscopy and they’ll tell you that it’s one of the most painful and uncomfortable things they’ve ever experienced. Despite sedation being used to relieve discomfort, having a flexible instrument about the diameter of an index finger inserted through your backside and poking around through your colon is not the most pleasant thing in the world, but it is the most effective way of detecting bowel diseases like colon cancer. No one in their right mind would ever undergo the invasive procedure unless their life literally depended on it, and yet one Chinese proctologist  performed it on himself, even though he didn’t need to.

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Mysterious Condition Causes Woman’s Eyes to Clamp Shut for Three Days at a Time

For the past 13 years, Natalie Adler, of Melbourne Australia, has been battling a strange medical condition that causes her eyelids to close for up to three days at a time, rendering her completely blind. After countless tests and procedures, doctors still don’t have a proper diagnosis.

Natalie’s life changed dramatically one seemingly normal Sunday, when she was 17-years-old. She just woke up with extremely swollen eyelids and her eyes soon started closing intermittently for various periods of time. In a few weeks time, they were closing for three days, followed by three normal days, and she found herself having to get used to the unusual routine, because doctors could not figure out what was wrong.

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Indian Girl Allegedly Has “Cotton Tears” Oozing From Her Eyes Every Day

An 11-year-old from the Indian state of Madhya Pradesh has allegedly been popping out 35 to 40 small white pebbles of what looks like cotton from her eyes, every day for over two weeks.

Manasi, a sixth-grader from the village of Pachkhura, apparently started producing the bizarre white “cotton tears” on August 25, and her father, as well as the locals are convinced that she is possessed by a ghost. Villagers have been avoiding the girl and her family ever since word got out about her condition, fearing divine wrath, and her parents are so superstitious that they have yet to consult an ophthalmologist.

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Peruvian Diver Left Looking Like a Balloon After Rising From the Depths Too Fast

Alejandro Ramos Martínez, a seafood diver from Pisco, Peru, recently made international headlines after a terrible accident left him looking like a human balloon. He apparently rose from a depth of 30 meters too fast, which caused the nitrogen in his blood to form giant bubbles that adhered to his muscles, leaving him looking deformed.

Martínez’s unusual case was featured on Peruvian TV show “Cuarto Poder”, where doctors were left stunned by the horrifying effect of the nitrogen pods on the man’s physical appearance. Decompression sickness, also known as ‘the bends’, causes nitrogen to come out of solution and form bubbles in the blood and tissues. In mild cases, symptoms include unusual fatigue, dizziness, nausea and joint pain, but in rare cases it can also cause paralysis or even death. The deforming effects it has had on this Peruvian diver are believed to be unique

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7-Year-Old Girl Suffers from “Uncombable Hair Syndrome”

7-year-old Shilah Yin is one of only around 100 people in the world with a condition known as “uncombable hair syndrome”. Instead of downwards, her hair grows out from the scalp in multiple directions, and can’t be combed flat.

Shilah, from Melbourne, Australia, was born with normal hair, but her parents noticed a strawberry blond fuzz growing on her scalp when she was 3 months old. From then on, her hair started growing straight out and became even blonder. The girl noticed her unusual hair when she was about 4, after it started getting a lot of attention from other children and adults. It made her feel uneasy at first, but after her parents told her it was special, she embraced her unique look.

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Agoraphobic Artist Travels the World without Leaving Her House

Jacqui Kenny has always wanted to travel the world, meet new people and discover different cultures, but she suffers from agoraphobia – an anxiety disorder characterized by fear of public spaces, public transportation, open spaces and/or large crowds – so she rarely gets to leave her house. Luckily, modern technology allows her to live out her dream, sort of.

Jacqui was diagnosed with agoraphobia 8 years ago, but she has been dealing with extreme anxiety and panic attacks for over 20 years now. Last year was a particularly trying time, as a company  that she had co-founded for many years had just closed, and dealing with the stress of it, on top of her mental issues, was tough. She didn’t know what she was going to do with her life, and leaving the house to face the world was not an option. She needed something to keep her busy, and somehow, she discovered Google Street View.

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Insatiable 10-Year-Old Boy Weighs 90 Kg, Eats Anything He Gets His Hands On

At age 10, Caden Benjamin, from Mpumalanga, South Africa already tips the scales at a whopping 90 kg. He suffers from a rare genetic disorder known as Prader-Willi syndrome, which makes him feel hungry all the time.

Caden was always a hungry child, but his mother, Zola, realized that there was something unusual about his appetite at age 3, when he already weighed 40 kilograms. He took the boy to several doctors, but no one could explain why he was so hungry all the time and gaining so much weight. Finally, a doctor at Steve Biko Academic Hospital in Pretoria ran some tests and diagnosed Caden with Prader-Willi syndrome, an incurable condition that affects about 20 000 people worldwide.

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Chinese Man Proves That Eating 54 Ice Creams in One Sitting Is Not a Good Idea

A 44-year-old man from Quzhou, China’s Zhejiang province, was recently hospitalized with severe kidney problems, after eating a whopping 54 ice creams in one sitting, and washing them down with ice water.

The man, surnamed Zheng, was at his home, on July 15, when he began to feel the effects of the heatwaves that have been sweeping China for the last few weeks. Tired and dehydrated after a hot day, Zheng went to his refrigerator and grabbed an ice cream to cool off. Problem was that that first ice-cream only made him crave another, and then another, so he kept eating them until he went through all the 54 frozen treats he had in his fridge. I’ve never head of anyone having that many ice-creams in their home, but apparently this guy did.

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