In 2010 a UK man had chronic hiccups for 2 1/2 years, and was told by doctors it was probably heartburn. A Japanese variety show picked up the story, and in the course of filming, discovered a brain tumor. The tumor was removed, his hiccups went away, and this possibly saved his life.
The Spanish Flu was named that because it’s effects on countries involved in WW1 were censored for morale. Spain was neutral and thus papers reported on the flu hitting Spain, making people believe Spain was hit especially hard.
Surgical masks are designed to trap respiratory secretions (including bacteria and viruses) expelled by the wearer and prevent disease transmission to others. Surgical masks are not designed to protect the wearer from contracting the flu virus.
A woman correctly detected 11 out of 12 subjects in a Parkinson’s study using her sense of smell. 8 months later the one extra she believed had Parkinson’s was diagnosed with the disease making her 12/12.
In 1954, an Irishman, after taking “a good swig” from a beer bottle, saw leprechauns all over the place. Unfortunately, the beer bottle contained not beer but a highly poisonous industrial chemical. He realized his mistake at once, drunk salt water and got some of it up. Nevertheless he was “deeply inebriated” and went into coma for 36 hours. Coming out of the coma he had paranoid delusions. That night he awoke in delirium and saw that the ward was its usual length, but only was about two feet high. “In response to my cries, a little nurse 12 inches high ran to my bed. I told her I was afraid, so she tried to reassure me and went away to get a hot drink. While she was away, other nurses came to bedside and were later followed by a doctor. They were all about 12 inches tall. I recognized all of them as the nurses and doctor I had seen before. The only other person besides myself who seemed the normal size was a patient in the bed next to mine. I was terribly afraid while all this was going on. They changed my shirt and gave me an injection. The next morning everything went back to its usual size.” Today, this disorienting neurological condition is known as Alice in Wonderland syndrome or lilliputian hallucinations.
In 2001 Philip Morris published a report saying cigarettes saved the government money because smokers die before retiring.
After President Carter retired, he started an effort to eradicate the Guinea Worm, which infected millions of people with worms that slowly and painfully burrow out of the body over 3 months. By 2001, the infection rate was reduced by 98%, with 80% of the remaining cases in the Sudan warzone.
FDR founded an organization to find a cure for polio, and believed that if every American gave only a dime, polio would be eradicated. Because of this motto, after his death in 1945, FDR’s face was put on the dime, and his organization was renamed “The March of Dimes.”
Scientists recreated a 9th century onion and garlic eye remedy from an Anglo-Saxon manuscript, and found that it killed 90% of antibiotic-resistant staph bacteria (MRSA).
There are areas where it is common for people to live over 100 years are known as “Blue Zones”. There are 5 on Earth: Sardinia, Italy; Okinawa, Japan; Nicoya Peninsula, Costa Rica; Loma Linda, California; and Icaria, Greece.