It seems that Kenya has been hit with something that lots of people have called a “mysterious illness,” although the problem itself is not quite a mystery. Check out the latest reports in order to find out what happened.
Kenya mysterious illness is addressed
At St. Theresa’s Eregi Girls’ High School in Kakamega, Kenya, a large number of students have been hospitalized due to an unknown illness.
Over 100 students reported experiencing symptoms such as knee pain, difficulty walking, and leg paralysis. Some girls even had convulsions and erratic body movements.
Health officials have collected samples for laboratory testing, but no results have been released yet. Some experts speculate that the illness could be caused by mass hysteria.
What Is Mass Hysteria?
The phenomenon of mass hysteria, also referred to as mass psychogenic illness (MPI), is characterized by the rapid spread of conversion disorder among a group of individuals without any underlying organic cause. These outbreaks typically occur in closely-knit communities undergoing high levels of emotional or mental stress, such as workplaces or schools.
This mental disorder dates back to the 14th century and has affected people from various cultures and regions across the globe, believed to be a result of social and cultural contagion. Mass hysteria leads to a disruption in the brain, resulting in physical symptoms that are beyond an individual’s control and vary based on the triggered part of the brain.
Symptoms can include:
Unusual muscle tension, spasms, twitches, and tremors.
Dizziness or fainting.
In the past, this community has experienced mass hysteria before. According to the BBC, four years ago, a student developed a cough that rapidly spread to others.
However, the symptoms resembled those of a viral illness.
The current situation at the girls’ school is alarming since the symptoms are not typical of a viral disease. Some parents have removed their children from school, but it is unclear whether the school has closed, as reported by the BBC.