We wrote a story over a year ago about a mysterious disease which is affecting people primarily in California and Florida. Then we found out that this may not be a real disease. It could also be the strange skin disease we reported on two years ago. Now KTVU.comreports that while most physicians are still skeptical about it, one scientist is beginning to take Morgellons seriously.
Sufferers report extreme itching, then fibers ooze out of open lesions on their skin, accompanied by uncontrollable muscle twitching. The symptoms are being reported by over three thousand people, nationwide. In Oklahoma, researcher Randy Wymore has assembled a medical team to get to the bottom of this malady, once and for all. He says that early reports that the extrusions from skin sores were textile fibers are "just not true, to be perfectly blunt about it." He thinks they are evidence that the disease somehow causes these substances to form inside the body and says, "We know there's something going on here. [Patients] are not delusional."
Epstein-Barr, the name of the sydrome that makes patients feel tired and vaguely ill, used to be thought of as a form of hypochondria, but now a virus for Epstein-Barr has recently been discovered.
Here's something else that sufferers know is real: The debilitating headaches known as migraines, which can put them out of commission for hours, or even days. Pain medicines don't work well against them. Migraine sufferers are told to avoid certain foods, like red wine, but that often doesn't help much either. Now there's a machine that can "zap" away the pain.
Like most of the new pain medications, it needs to be used as soon as possible, because it's less effective once the headache takes hold. The device, which is called a TMS, interrupts the aura phase of the migraine, often described as an electrical storm in the brain, before it can lead to a headache. Auras signal the onset of migraine headaches. People who suffer from migraines often describe "seeing" showers of shooting stars, zigzagging lines and flashing lights, and experiencing loss of vision, weakness, tingling or confusion. Then the intense throbbing head pain follows, sometimes accompanied by nausea and vomiting.
When the TMS, invented by neurologist Yousef Mohammad, is held against a person's head. It sends a strong electric current through a metal coil, creating an intense magnetic field for about one millisecond. This magnetic pulse sends an electric current to the neurons of the brain, interrupting the aura before it results in a headache. The pulses themselves are painless.
Hopefully, every migraine sufferer will soon be able to have a TMS close by, so they can use it whenever they sense a migraine coming on. An end to these horrible headaches would seem like a miracle for these folks.
Art credit: freeimages.co.uk
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