Characterized by eating substances with no nutritional value the reasons behind it may vary. Although sometimes it can be the result of cultural traditions it is often found in children with developmental disabilities or iron deficiency.
While there are people out there who crave blood, this is not the disorder we are addressing here. Porphyria is an incurable and inherited disease that causes not only blisters but also cramps and paralysis whenever the afflicted individual is exposed to sunlight. This shouldn’t be confused with polymorphic light eruption, however. The latter is actually a fairly common disorder afflicting approximately 15% of North Americans (mainly in the north) and only leads to mild rashes upon initial springtime exposure to sunlight.
A disorder that leads to people compulsively pulling out their hair, the peak of onset is between the ages of 9 to 13 and in extreme cases the hair is actually ingested as well.
A strange and little understood disorder that can potentially lead to people sleeping for weeks on end. Fortunately most children that are afflicted will see the symptoms gradually disappear by the time they reach their twenties.
A rare disorder, individuals suffer abrupt twisting motions whenever their muscles sustain any contraction. The most well-publicised case in recent history involved that of Deseree Jennings, the 25 year old girl who was aspiring to be a professional football cheerleader when she acquired the disease from a flu shot. Although she can’t walk forwards, stand in one spot, or talk normally while doing either of the two, she can walk backwards and even run during which her convulsions and strained speech temporarily revert to normal.
Exploding Head Syndrome
Don’t worry, this isn’t what you think. Often attributed to stress, people will be startled out of their sleep in the middle of the night as a result of hearing a loud banging sound. As of yet doctors have been unable to isolate any negative effects of this phenomenon other than people developing an extreme aversion to falling asleep. Fortunately, however, the bangs typically subside after several days.
Perpetual Shuteye (almost)
In what has been baffling doctors all over the world, Natalie Adler of Australia has a problem with her eyes, more specifically her eyelids. Every now and then they will close tightly and not reopen for up to three days. Doctors believe it may be a type of conversion disorder, something that happens when a person internalizes various psychological issues which then manifest themselves physically.
Fish Odor Syndrome
Struggling with something called trimethylaminuria literally stinks. As a result of the body’s inability to break down a certain organic compound found in numerous foods an afflicted individual tends to give off an overwhelmingly strong fish-smelling odor. Unfortunately there is no cure but thus far people have managed to control it by employing various diets.
Blue Skin Disorder
As a result of something called methemoglobinemia, which causes decreased blood oxygen levels, some people develop a very deep bluish tint to their skin. The cause of this hereditary disorder was recently discovered, however, and those who it afflicted have since received treatment, their skin reverting back to normal.
Tree Bark Skin
Known as Epidermodysplasia Verruciformis, this hereditary skin disorder is caused by HPV (human papilloma virus) and causes wart-like growths on your skin to spread out of control. One of the worst cases on record is that of Dede Koswara from Indonesia. He recently had 95% of his warts removed but within the year almost all of them had grown back.
David is the editor-in-chief of List25. He has a Masters degree in International Business from University of Florida. He loves to break dance, do flips, play guitar, and everything else that is fun. Follow him on Twitter @iamdpegg