Many of us who have binge-watched House, think that they won’t freak out seeing or hearing about rare and bizarre medical conditions. But the truth is, medical conditions aren’t as strange as they show on TV. 

They are creepier and way more bizarre. Like these.

1. Cotard’s Delusion

Those suffering from Cotard’s Delusion are convinced they are dead and rotting or are losing body parts. These people refuse to eat or bathe out of worry. It is a rare neuropsychiatric condition that is apparently caused by a failure in areas of the brain that recognize emotions.


2. Encephalitis lethargica

Strange neuropsychiatric behaviours and an overwhelming lethargic sleepiness, which induces a coma like state, as well as muscle rigidity, are some of the common symptoms. While the cause of the strange illness still remains a mystery, the encephalitis lethargica epidemic of 1916-1930 is estimated to have affected at least half a million people in Europe.

science direct

3.  Alice in Wonderland syndrome

Those with this condition feel that they are rapidly shrinking or expanding, and often believe objects appear smaller than they actually are. Research has linked this condition to migraine headaches. It is also believed that Lewis Carroll, the author of Alice in Wonderland, himself suffered from severe migraines and his condition may have inspired many of the scenes in the book.

The New York Times

4. Exploding head syndrome

Those who have this condition report hearing extremely loud sounds, similar to gunshots or cymbal crashes, in their own heads. Untreated, the condition can cause sleep problems.

science focus

5. Congenital analgesia

This condition inhibits an individual’s ability to perceive and feel physical pain. This lack of awareness of pain often leads to an accumulation of wounds, bruises, broken bones, and other health issues that may go undetected.

new scientist

6. Fibrodysplasia ossificans progressiva

It is a genetic disorder that transforms soft tissues into bone after injury or other trauma. The disease can eventually cause joints and muscles to stiffen up and fuse together.

hamdan medical journal

7. Morgellons disease

Those who suffer from this medical condition, report feeling crawling, biting, and stinging sensations on their bodies as if they were covered or infested with bugs. Some even report strange, dark threads or fibers popping out of their skin, according to the Morgellons Research Foundation.


8. Dancing Mania

Also known as the Dancing Plague, it occurred between the 14th and 17th centuries in Europe when citizens in the German city of Aachen started to pour out of their houses into the streets and began to writhe and whirl uncontrollably. They kept dancing till they collapsed of exhaustion, some broke their ribs, while other had cardiac arrests and died.

Big Think

9. Prader-Willi Syndrome

Prader-Willi syndrome is a complex genetic condition that affects many parts of the body. Most of the affected individuals develop an insatiable appetite in childhood which leads to chronic overeating and obesity. It is believed that they can literally eat to death.


10. Capgras Delusion

The Capgras delusion is a condition in which a person believes that either an individual or a group of people has been replaced by doubles or imposters.


While we may still doubt these conditions, they are real for the patients who have them.