Doctors Reveal The Rarest Disease Discovered in Their Patients

The body is a marvelous thing. So many different parts work in unison to keep us alive. From eating healthy and exercising regularly, there are many… Trista - October 11, 2021

The body is a marvelous thing. So many different parts work in unison to keep us alive. From eating healthy and exercising regularly, there are many things people can do to stay fit. Nevertheless, even the healthiest people can get sick from time to time. What are some common conditions that usually send people to the doctor for a checkup? Symptoms like a sore throat, upset stomach, or sneezing are common. These may be signs of everyday illnesses, such as the flu, strep throat, or the common cold. Heck, that is so common that people identify it within the name! Although being sick is no fun, it is nice to recover fully — and quickly. In some cases, a disease can be more serious.

People have unusual symptoms that come from abnormal conditions. Sometimes doctors can’t figure out the problem or misdiagnose the situation because the disease is so rare. Perhaps they never even encountered the medical issue before in real life; hopefully, they at least saw something in a textbook! Either way, this Reddit thread is dedicated to doctors who discovered a disease so rare that it was a staple in their career. They probably still think about the bizarre case today, as does the patient! Keep reading to learn more about some of the rarest diseases in the world and the day the doctor and patient had that discussion! You might have heard of certain conditions, but please don’t go around thinking you have them all. Instead of diagnosing yourself, see a medical professional.


30. A Story of The Heart Not Being Where It’s Supposed To Be

Most of us learned in a basic biology class where the heart is supposed to be. It’s also an important lesson because it teaches us what we should look out for if we start to experience a heart attack. But there are some conditions that force the heart to not be where we expect it to be. In this story shared by raftsa, the heart ended up somewhere that was actually quite dangerous.

“[A] rare and interesting [disease] would be Pentalogy of Cantrell. [That means someone] has the heart outside of the chest. Why? Because the sternum has not fused. I’d seen it before with just a bit of the heart on view. But, with this kid, it was completely out. You could see pretty much the whole heart with the aorta and lung vessels all that was holding it; the heart just beating away. I’d done adult cardiac for a bit, but this was a little different. Tiny. We covered it with a polystyrene cup until the kid went or theatre to have it pushed back inside.”


29. Soft Tissues and Bones Are Meant To Be Separate

Muscles are soft tissues that hold the bones together and help them to move around; bones are made from calcium and specialized bone cells to create and support the integrity of the body as a whole. But as uh034 shared in this story, there are some conditions that “bridge” that gap somewhat, leading to horrible health results.

“Fibrodysplasia ossificans progressiva (FOP). A disease that calcifies soft tissue and turns it into bone. When I was a medical student, our group’s cadaver had this disease. During dissections, we sometimes would get poked by spiky pieces of bone in random areas of her body. Also had a spine that resembled a small turtle shell.” Not only is it a very painful condition, but any injuries could cause the bones to grow in those spots, making it even more painful and difficult to move, especially if you’re undergoing any kind of physical therapy to help you recover.


28. Pregnancies That Aren’t Real

Have you ever heard of a fake pregnancy? Not like tricking someone into thinking you are pregnant… one that your body believes. The mind can be a powerful thing, convincing us of things that aren’t really there. In some cases, the attention of a psychiatrist or psychologist can help us to deal with those concerns and conditions. However, the mind can be such a powerful thing that it convinces the body of something that is not true. lurkhippo shared this story of a woman who displayed all of the clear signs of a condition that could only happen through other scientific means.

“Pseudocyesis or hysterical pregnancy, in a woman who was an inmate in the psych wing of a prison I rotated through. She thought she was pregnant with Jesus’s triplets and had grown a massive pregnant-looking belly, was producing milk, etc.” To think that a woman’s body could show signs of pregnancy without being pregnant is definitely strange but also quite rare. It’s a wonder what they did to treat this condition since the woman couldn’t actually give birth to a baby. It makes you question whether this kind of condition could continue for the rest of her life.


27. What Happens When You Don’t Have A Skull?

The skull is a very important part of the skeletal system. It protects our soft, squishy brains from damage, gives our eyes a place to sit, and makes it possible for us to talk and pretty much function. Because it houses the brain, it’s difficult for a person to survive without a skull. Mediocre_Street9040 apparently witnessed a condition where someone is born with a skull, and then it’s just… not there anymore. What would you do if you came across someone with the following rare disease?

“Gorham’s disease aka vanishing skull syndrome. A softball-sized area of my patient’s skull disappeared and left behind a soft spot. She ended up with a plastic plate to protect her brain. Crazy disease.” That’s definitely a strange phenomenon, and no one really knows why it happens. It’s not genetic in nature, nor is it caused by environmental factors. There is also no test that can be conducted to diagnose a person with the disease until symptoms already start to present themselves.


26. No One Expects Pins and Needles In Your Chin

Have you ever sat for too long and started to experience that tingling sensation in your leg? It’s a horrible sensation, especially when you get up and blood starts to flow back into the area again. Many people describe the condition as feeling like pins and needles being inserted into the skin. But a patient that Oamob was working on described the sensation in their chin of all places, and then it feeling entirely numb. How does that kind of thing happen? It is a rare disease with a pretty straightforward name.

“I literally google ‘Numb Chin Syndrome’ on my phone – I was surprised to find it was actually a thing, but the only search results are random case reports from decades ago. […] there was one or two cases where the patients happened to have leukemia. I mentioned this to the intern in a vain attempt to claw back some brownie points, but I didn’t expect them to stop and look at me. It turns out that the guy’s only past medical history was that they had had leukemia years ago. So it turns out the numb chin was a really rare sign that their cancer was coming back and had deposited in the narrow bony canal where the nerve to their chin lives.”


25. A Baby Within A Baby

When a woman is pregnant, there are rare cases where she may end up having twins. Or even more than twins. However, what’s more common is that there are two embryos that develop, and one ends up absorbing the other in the uterus. It’s actually more common than people realize. xtranscendentx shared a story of something else entirely: a child who ended up being pregnant with his twin instead. Does that change the dynamic of the family right away so the mother is actually a grandma, too?

“10 y.o. boy came in with enlarging abdominal mass and intermittent generalized weakness. Imaging revealed a parasitic “fetus,” which was also growing in size. History revealed mass noted two years ago, which enlarged rapidly the last 3-4 months. Within days of admission, the boy’s organs begin to fail for no apparent reason. The family wanted surgical intervention to separate the parasitic twin against surgeons’ advice. The parasitic twin was basically starving/poisoning the boy to death. Surgeons opened the boy up and found that the boy and parasitic twin share a (stomach, liver, heart, blood vessels – mesodermal organs) basically too complex to operate. The boy passed away after.”


24. When “Keeping It In The Family” Ends Up Being Detrimental

It’s a very sensitive topic to talk about, but incest occurs more often than people realize. That’s usually because it occurs when an older family member exerts power over a younger member of the family, resulting in the horrible case of incest occurring. tskir had to share the horrible story of the results of such a relationship when incest led to the birth of a child. There’s a reason that genetic diversity is important when it comes to having a baby.

“When the code ingested a genome sequencing sample, it attempted to detect the chromosomal sex of the patient. It used two metrics: the sample was considered female if it (1) lacked Y chromosome, and (2) was heterozygous on the X chromosome, implying there were two copies of it. Otherwise, the sample was considered male. This one sample registered as female on metric 1 (no Y chromosome) but male on metric 2 (very little heterozygocity on the X chromosome), which was not anticipated and resulted in our pipeline crashing. Upon investigation, it turned out that the parents of that poor girl were brother and sister to each other.”


23. The Brain Can Become A Very Dangerous Organ

As mentioned before, the brain can convince us of some strange things that we believe to be real. Mental conditions are extremely serious and should be treated accordingly, but there are just some conditions that are so beyond the realm of the medical profession that they don’t know how to provide any kind of treatment. bittertiltheend shared a story that’s a bit difficult to believe because it sounds like it’s right out of a television show or movie.

“Walking corpse syndrome – cotard delusion. Seventeen years in mental health, and I’ve seen it once. The belief that some or all of you is dead. The guy was so certain he was dead he believed he was a zombie.” This condition is more serious than just believing one is dead: they may actively hurt themselves or stop eating with the belief that they don’t need to because they’re already dead. The syndrome could be caused by a number of conditions related to the brain, including brain injuries, epilepsy, or dementia, just to name a few.


22. Everything Was Flipped To The Other Side

In basic biology, we learn that the heart is primarily on the left side of the body, as well as the spleen and most of the liver, while the appendix is on the right side of the body. This is so that people will take note when they feel pain on certain sides of their body so that they can seek medical attention immediately. But SophistRS happened to come across a patient where what is taught about the heart ends up being completely wrong. This is definitely a rare disease, but everything seems to be working out for the patient.

“We learned to examine from the patient’s right, but in this case, the senior medical student in the room with me was at the patient’s right. I started auscultating the standard APTM spots for the heart, but I performed them from the *left* side. When I had concluded the exam, I said I heard normal heart sounds. The senior student told me that I had auscultated in the spots opposite of where I should have – he then performed them properly and looked puzzled when the heart sounds seemed displaced. It turned out the patient had dextrocardia!” Dextrocardia is a condition where the heart is present on the right side of the chest instead of the left.


21. Rare and Serious Conditions are Very Difficult to Treat

When anything happens with the brain, there can be serious and long-term side effects. That’s the entire reason the skull is there: to protect it from external forces that could injure it. But the skull doesn’t help when the problems are occurring inside the brain. In fact, the skull can actually end up making things worse because there’s nowhere for a swelling brain to go, causing even more damage. TheFireman04 had a case involving a woman who ended up being diagnosed with Hashimoto’s Encephalopathy.

“We knocked on the window, and she turned her head and just stared at us. Like, horror movie stare. We found an open window and finally got to her. I asked her if she could speak, and she said “yes.” That was the only word she said. She went into one of the strongest seizures I’ve ever seen and dumped a bottled water’s worth of saliva out of her mouth. That lasted about two minutes. Her heart rate was going haywire. 130 down to 60, then back up to 120. She had another seizure as we were walking into the ER, which was even stronger and partnered with A LOT of blood coming out of her mouth and nose.”


20. When One Diagnosis Ends Up Being Something Else

As much as we don’t want to admit it, doctors are only human beings who can make mistakes. The problem is that their patients end up getting the brunt of things when a mistake is made. So when it comes to making a diagnosis, it can take a doctor a long time to get to one because they don’t want to make a mistake. That can sometimes lead to the patient enduring some pain during that time. For lixo_humano_97, they really wanted to make sure they got the diagnosis right.

“When I was in my pediatric internship, there was this baby with hepatomegaly (big liver). In my region, the first thing that you have to think about in this case is a disease called Kala-Azar (also known as black fever or visceral leishmaniosis). But the catch was that she kept having those episodes of hypoactivity and sleepiness, and sometimes even faintings that would then get better after she was being breastfed. Her lab was normal, and she had no other clinical signs that would remind her of kala-azar besides the hepatomegaly. The patient had Hers Disease, a genetic disorder that makes you produce less Glycogen due to an enzyme defect.”


19. Breast Cancer Isn’t Just For Women

There are some conditions and diseases that we all think are gender-specific. One such disease is breast cancer; we all see the pink ribbons during the month of October in support of those who are currently dealing with breast cancer, as well as to honor those who have died from this horrible disease. But no one considers that men have breast tissue also; it’s not as much as women, but it’s still prone to developing cancer cells. lesubreddit managed to meet such a male patient who was presenting some weird symptoms one day.

“In med school, I saw a male patient who came in with a new lump in his right breast. We get a mammogram on him; it turns out the right breast lump is totally benign fat necrosis from prior minor trauma, but on the left breast, which was scanned for comparison purposes, there were some really suspicious looking calcifications and architectural changes. Biopsy on that left breast revealed breast cancer at a very early stage. Unbelievably lucky catch.” This man was lucky that he went to the doctor instead of treating this lump like it was nothing.


18. Forgetting That Half Of Your Body Exists

A stroke can do very strange things to your brain. This is where the blood supply to the brain suddenly stops for some reason, which can cause lasting damage if it’s not treated immediately. When a brain is starved of blood and oxygen for too long, then there are lasting results that a person may never recover from. As Iamoldsowhat shares in this story, a patient who suffered from a stroke ended up forgetting that they had another side of their body. If you suspect you are having a stroke, or someone by you, you should call 911 immediately. You can ask them to smile, to see if one side of the face droops. That is also a good indicator if they raise both arms, and one is downard. Have them say something to hear if it sounds strange. Don’t forget to note the time. Do not give them food, drink, or medication, and don’t let them drive.

“The person completely forgets that there is more than one side to their body: they will brush only half their hair, do makeup or shave half their face and use only one hand. If you put an object into the hand on the neglected side, it is as if it disappears for them. And it’s not paralysis—they are able to move that arm. It’s just to them that half of the body does not exist. Strokes are fascinating actually, or rather our brain is—you can be fully paralyzed from a tiny stroke in an important brain area, or you can have a huge stroke in a non-important area and be totally fine.”


17. When The Ringing In Your Ears Is Actually Audible By Those Around You

We’ve all had a little ringing in our ears at some point during our lives. It may happen once or twice, but for those people with tinnitus, it can be a constant thing that becomes quite annoying. But have you considered that maybe other people may be able to hear a ringing sound coming from inside your ear? palmaud shared this story of a patient who had something called objective tinnitus. It really proves that this noise isn’t just something in their head. Especially when other people can hear it, too!

“I could lean close to the patient’s ear and hear a ringing noise coming out. the objective tinnitus was following ear surgery. The patient’s middle ear muscles were constantly twitching, causing a ringing sound, and her eardrum was acting like a speaker, so we could hear it outside her head. This is very different from subjective tinnitus (the normal kind where the ringing is only heard in your head).” Can you imagine being by a person with an actual ringing noise emerging from their ears? You would think the phone is going off constantly, or something similar to that.


16. Rare Conditions With Children Are Heartbreaking To Deal With

It can be heartbreaking when a child gets sick, and you don’t know what to do about it. When it’s a rare condition you’ve never heard of, then it can be even more confusing as to what you should do. Going to the doctor is always the best advice, but sometimes, a case may even stump a doctor if they’ve never seen anything like it before. the_shven tells the story of such a case, and it took a call from a family member to help solve the problem. Hopefully, it is something with a cure or, at least, treatment. And something you can learn more about, to help other families.

“Had an 18mo kiddo came into the hospital with fevers, grey skin tone, huge spleen, and liver. The baby was born in the US, but the family went back to Azerbaijan for 4mo when she was 4mo old. She’s only had her 2mo vaccines. While I’m chatting with the family, trying to figure out what we’re missing, they get a call from GMA back in Azerbaijan. She tells the family, “tell the Drs she sounds like a sickness we see here called Leishmaniasis.” Scan through the bone marrow, and […] you can see 10-15 of the little devils. Sent the sample off to CDC for confirmation, but it was classic visceral leishmaniasis.”


15. When Your Body Tries To Take Care Of Itself And Backfires

The body is a little adaptable when it comes to certain things. It tries to take care of itself as much as possible without outside help, but there are just some things that do require medical attention. According to LatrodectusGeometric, a patient’s body was trying to take care of a condition all by itself, but it only ended up making the patient worse. In fact, the patient could have died if he hadn’t gone to the emergency room that day. These things can and do happen. If you think you have a disease, even a rare one, don’t be afraid to say something to your doctor. It might make all the difference, like in this case.

“I had a gentleman who came into the emergency room with extreme fatigue and was found to have very little blood in his body. I asked him what his medical conditions were, and he told me he had polycythemia vera, which is a condition where the body makes TOO MUCH blood, the opposite. Eventually, we discovered that he did have polycythemia vera but had been slowly bleeding from an obscure GI bleed, a tiny blood vessel in his small intestine that would come in and out and bleed small amounts into his stool. In essence, his body was self-treating, having too much blood by doing its own bloodletting, for years.”


14. Sometimes The Womb Is Not The Safest Place for a Developing Baby

Pregnant mothers are always worried about what they’re putting into their bodies, as it could harm their developing babies. But what they may not consider is that within the amniotic sac, a baby is dealing with secret battles of its own. Even though the sac is filled with fluid that is supposed to protect and provide nutrients to a baby, there are other things present that can end up damaging a child. That’s what FocusInTheNow had to deal with when they were in the delivery room with a pregnant woman.

“30-year-old African-American in active labor with about five family members around her. I am the pediatrician at the bedside, waiting for the baby to come out so I can examine him. He comes out, and all of his poor little distal limbs are severely disfigured or missing digits. It turns out he had intrauterine amniotic banding. Pieces of the amniotic sack get wrapped around limbs and digits. This causes strangulation of the blood flow and prevents development. The worst thing I have ever seen and has one in 1 million chance of happening. But mom took him in her arms and loved him all night long as if nothing was different about him.”


13. Genetic Syndromes Can Cause Very Strange Results

Genes are meant to carry information that not only tells the body how to function but how to develop as well. They’re more than what makes a person look like their parents. They’re an essential part of how a developing body grows. One error and the entire process can be thrown into whack. This can lead to any number of genetic syndromes that there are no cures for. It comes down to manageability and making the person as comfortable as possible. urunu12345 explains one such syndrome that can be quite difficult for a person and their family to deal with.

“[A] 4-5-year-old patient with Lesch Nyhan Syndrome on my peds rotation in med school. It’s an X-linked recessive disease that a quick Google search tells me affects about 1 in every 400,000 individuals. It’s due to a mutation in an enzyme involved with DNA recycling. The thing all med students remember about it is for whatever reason. These patients have a tendency to self-mutilate. My specific patient had to have a procedure to have all his teeth removed because he would terribly bite his arms unless he was physically restrained. I believe he had an older brother that went through the same ordeal.”


12. A Doctor Who Found the Needle In The Haystack

Being a new medical student on rotation can be a bit nerve-racking. You don’t want to be wrong when you present a diagnosis to a doctor, but the lack of self-confidence can make that difficult. Luckily for yemewe, they managed to keep their cool and, instead of making a guess, decided to take to the Internet to discover what was going on with the patient they’d been given. They managed to get a glowing evaluation from their colleagues for it, too! When most people scour the internet for medical results, they just end up thinking, well, they have some rare disease. Don’ worry; millions of times, this is not the case. But if you think you do have something seriously wrong, just get it check out. Then, consider buying a lottery ticket, too, depending on the results.

“One morning [the surgeon] tells me to go examine a patient and tell him what he has. I assumed the surgeon already knew the diagnosis. I did the full 300-point med student physical exam and spent hours with this 25 yo kid. This kid had been in the hospital multiple times with life-threatening gastrointestinal bleeding and severe anemia. He had nystagmus in his eyes, and the color of his eyes was off. I got online with all of his symptoms/exam findings and basically typed them into Google. It is called Hermansky Pudlak syndrome.”


11. Your Skin Is Not Supposed To Be That Color

People aren’t sure what to do when their skin changes color to something that’s not normal. It’s definitely a sign that something is wrong, and medical attention should be sought immediately. But what is a doctor to do when the cause of the change is the patient themselves? TheTallerTaylor came across a patient whose skin had become completely silver/grey, and they weren’t sure what to do about it. Talking with the patient, it seemed, didn’t help matters at all.

“My first impression from across the room was that he was severely hypoxic, and I was amazed he was walking and talking. He made comments that made it appear he was a huge conspiracy theorist, so I was suspicious of colloidal silver toxicity. When I asked him about it, he shouted angrily, ‘I don’t take silver supplements anymore!’ After some prying, he said he took them to self-treat for a prion disease which he self-diagnosed from ‘the grape juice test’ where you spit out grape juice into a Petri dish and ‘a fungus grows out of it.’ At this point, I’m like yeah, this patient is nuts. I’m pretty sure he listened to too much Alex Jones and, as a result, permanently died his skin blue, a condition called argyria.”


10. When Not Even Your Doctors Understand What’s Going On

This story isn’t from a doctor, but from the patient themselves, since no doctor seems to really understand what they have. Every time they try to explain it, the doctor stares at them in disbelief. Anna_Draconis even explained that looking up the condition on the Internet always provides the wrong results for a different condition altogether. Thankfully, someone in the comments managed to provide them with a different name that they can take to their doctors for better treatment.

“I am someone with a rare disorder, called reflux valve disorder. Basically, it means that the valve between my kidneys and bladder doesn’t close or work properly, so I get kidney infections all the time. So far as I know, there’s no surgery or cure for it, just something internal that was deformed when I was born. It’s always a weird thing to explain to new doctors. Sometimes they point to a chart and say, “You do know you’re talking about this valve here, right?” or they just scrunch up their eyebrows in disbelief until I pee in a jar for them.”


9. Some People Have the Strangest Allergic Reactions

People can be allergic to just about anything. That includes everyday things like latex, wheat, or even water, and sunlight. It takes a lot of time and patience to figure out what a person could be allergic to. Unfortunately for this person, they had to figure things out the hard way until their doctor finally gave them a diagnosis that helped them to manage their condition in the future. According to AngelicaPickles, all it took was to leave one key ingredient out of their future meals.

“A year ago, I developed a pinprick-looking rash all over my torso and limbs. It was really itchy, and the strangest thing was it was shaped like whip marks, so I had to explain that I wasn’t being abused. It took a couple of weeks and several doctors before I was diagnosed with Flagellate shitake mushroom dermatitis, a freaky reaction to raw mushrooms. I was the first case my dermatologist ever saw.” Hopefully this person doesn’t love eating those raw mushrooms, otherwise she will be heartbroken. Better to be sad over a food you have to avoid, though, then going to an early grave over some fungus.


8. A Diagnosis that Could Only be Made When It’s Too Late

Cancer is a horrible, debilitating disease. Thankfully, modern medicine has made it easier for people to deal with it and come out on the other side, fully recovered and healthy. But there are some cancers that are extremely difficult to combat. According to S-Maturin, it’s a cancer called Merkel Cell Carcinoma and involves the sensory nerve cells of the skin. From their story, dealing with this kind of cancer isn’t easy.

“I was involved after the initial excision biopsy and assisted the sentinel node biopsy to check for metastasis. This is where a dye and a radioactive tracer are injected into the tumor. After a short time, a geiger counter is used over the skin to find the lymph node that the tissue in the tumor area drains toward first. It is then excised, being identified in surgery by the dye, and is sent to pathology to see if the tumor has spread to the lymphatic system.” And that must have been the case for this Reddit user. It is too bad to find such a rare disease, but hopefully we all can learn from this experience.


7. Paying Attention In Medical School Really Pays Off

Going through medical school isn’t easy for anyone, no matter how smart you are. You have to take everything into account while working incredibly long hours, and it can put a lot of stress on your body. But because your career is focused on helping people, it can be very rewarding to get things right. IDK_MY_BFF_JILLING went through the whole thing, and when presented with a patient, managed to provide them with a diagnosis and the help they needed to prevent their condition from becoming worse.

“When I was a medical student, I caught a Guillain-Barré syndrome, which is roughly 10-20 per million. He had been admitted to orthopedics with a working diagnosis of spinal stenosis because he was losing the strength in his legs. But being a medical student, I had tons of time to take a really detailed history and discovered that his paralysis was ascending from his feet to ankles to knees. [I] told the ortho team what I thought [and by] the next morning the paralysis had reached his diaphragm, and he was being ventilated in ICU.”


6. The Real Struggle Of A Parent Taking Care Of Their Sick Children

Becoming a parent can be a joyous blessing. However, it can also be a stressful time from the moment you conceive until, well, the end of time. Luckily, doctors do all that they can to make children healthy, but it’s on the parents to take care of those conditions for the rest of their lives. That makes raising children even more stressful than it needs to be, and it doesn’t help when everyone else around you doesn’t believe you or is too selfish to care. For N8theGr8, it’s something a lot more serious than other children not washing their hands.

“Both of my daughters have been diagnosed with FPIES. That’s short for Food protein-induced enterocolitis syndrome. It basically means that they show delayed allergic reactions to something like 90% of food out there. They can’t have dairy, soy, eggs, meat, nuts, wheat, and rice, just to name a few. My wife had to develop a lot of recipes on her own because nothing existed that included the foods that were available to them. Because of this, she may spend up to three hours a day cooking. We have to carry hand wipes with us because she’d end up having a reaction just from playing on things that other kids have played on.”


5. Go in For One Thing for One Patient, Someone Else Gets Diagnosed

Sometimes, you might take a friend or family member to the doctor with you. In most cases, it is your mother. Even so, you have certain expectations when you go to the doctor’s office as to what they might say to you. What you don’t expect is that the doctor will diagnose someone else in the room with you who didn’t come as a patient. It can be a bit alarming and confusing, but doctors don’t usually provide medical advice for free. Thankfully for kasowavd, the doctor’s random diagnosis ended up saving their mother’s life.

“My mom accompanied my sister on a visit to an allergist. The doc walked into the room, looked up from reading the chart, stopped dead in his tracks, and stared at my mother. Seemingly mesmerized, he walked up to my mom. Without asking permission or saying a word, poked a finger into her cheek. ‘You need to get to the ER right now.’ It turns out she had advanced colon cancer. She was bleeding internally and severely anemic,. Plus, her heart was failing, and fluid was backing up. It caused her face to be really pasty and bloated (which he recognized), and when he pressed his finger to her cheek, he saw serious pitting edema.”


4. Trying To Convince A Patient And Her Parents That There’s Nothing Wrong

At some point, when a person believes that they’re sick, it can be difficult for a doctor to convince them otherwise, no matter how much medical information is provided to them. One such condition is called delusional parasitosis, where a person suffers from a psychological disorder where they believe they are infected with parasitic worms or bugs. Providing medication for these parasites can have terrible side effects, and there’s no guarantee the patient will feel “cured” since there’s nothing wrong with them anyway. Unfortunately for Smeeee, they had one such patient come in.

“She actually brought a sample of these worms. She brought them in a glass, covered with saran wrap. I held it up to the light. It looked like saliva with clumps of mucus in it. As I was trying to convince her that it was just normal spit, her parents arrived. Mom and dad were livid with me when I suggested that it was in her head. So I opened up the glass, and with a gloved hand, I pulled out the “worms.” I ran it around in my fingers and showed them. I saw it in dad’s face, and then he turned to his wife and said, “honey, I think we need to talk.” I left the room, and they took her home 15 minutes later.”


3. When Someone Catches The “Forgotten Disease”

It’s one thing to get a rare disease, but it’s something else to contract something called “the forgotten disease,” which means that it’s not diagnosed very often. Unfortunately, if a doctor doesn’t consider this kind of diagnosis, then it could result in the death of the patient. OrdinaryBunbury wasn’t the doctor in this story, but their friend ended up being diagnosed with their rare and horrible condition.

“Someone I was close with in college came down with Lemierre’s Syndrome. He was home for Christmas break and had a sore throat. And he went to the doctor, the doctor said to hydrate, and it should go away. He dealt with it for another day or so. Then he started to get really bad headaches, and was throwing up a lot. Finally, his mom realized that he was throwing up excessively frequently and also there was blood. So she took him to the ER. He was also allergic to penicillin. That turned out to be a good thing because, apparently, that would have made it much worse. Apparently, one of the doctors thought, hey, it might be Lemierre’s Syndrome. And sure enough, when they started treating him for that, he started getting better.”


2. A Doctor Performs Surgery For One Thing And Discovers Something Else

Many surgeons never know what they’re going to find when they perform surgery on someone. Even with the latest in technology, they can end up surprising themselves once all of the layers are peeled back. That’s because medicine and science can be unpredictable, leaving doctors scratching their heads. jacquesrabbit decided to share this story of a surgery that revealed much more about the patient than even they knew.

“A guy came to to the hospital because of abdominal pain. He was diagnosed with an incarcerated hernia and sent to OT for exploratory laparotomy. Then the surgeon went in to see the inguinal anatomy if there is any other anatomical problems/disorders, i.e., torsion incarcerated inguinal hernia. Then, the surgeon could not find the testes. He went right into the scrotum but could not find any testes. So, he finally decided to pull out whatever organ he could find in the scrotum. He pulled out two eggs and a butterfly-shaped organ. They confirmed it: it was a uterus and two ovaries.”


1. A Story of The Body Trying To Destroy Itself

Autoimmune diseases are some of the strangest conditions that people have to deal with on a daily basis. To put it simply, the body’s immune system is basically targeting the other parts of the body, leading to a lot of pain and inflammation that can appear like other allergic reactions. themidnightradio’s girlfriend ended up being diagnosed with an autoimmune disorder, but she had to go through a lot before the doctors figured out what was wrong.

“One day, she noticed some little red dots on her legs, but they didn’t itch and weren’t raised. We figured it was an allergic reaction to her new body wash or something, so we didn’t worry too much. One day, she came home from work early because her legs had swollen up, and she could barely walk. She spends the next four weeks in three different hospitals until dermatologist figures out she has henoch schonlein purpura. That is basically an autoimmune disease where the white blood cells attack the blood vessels, destroying them. Blood was flowing down into her legs and couldn’t return.”