Mass hysteria is one theory brewing about the mysterious rash of hiccups plaguing one Massachusetts town for the past year, but that’s just a theory and the phenomenon is still unexplained today. Danvers, Mass. is a town that stands on the same land where mass hysteria once caused the cold-blooded murders of people thought to be witches centuries ago, according to “Fox and Friends Weekend” live on Sunday on June 30, 2013.
State health officials are quietly investigating the cases of the unexplained hiccups that originally hit just students, but one adult is suffering the same symptoms today. This past school year up to two dozen students are exhibiting unexplained vocal tics or repetitive hiccups at two schools in Danvers. The Essex Agricultural and Technical School and to a lesser degree, the North Shore Technical High in Middleton are the two schools seeing these mysterious cases, according to Yahoo News.
Air tests and visual observations at the schools have turned up nothing. The air contains nothing that would lead to “significant neurological effects.” The state is reaching out to 2,600 regional doctors as health officials are stumped for answers in this mystery. The
Department of Public Health and the Board of Registration of Medicine sent letters to more than 2,600 attending physicians, who encompass more than a dozen medical specialties looking to see if any of the doctors had treated patients with chronic hiccups or vocal tics from the two schools. The doctors were asked to discuss the state investigation with parents, hopefully to see if they would consent to allow the state to obtain the patients’ medical records.
Both schools have a little less than 500 students enrolled each and the students come from a wide area, which includes several towns in that region. The state is hoping to find some kind of correlation by reaching out to doctors in that area for information.
So far, no environmental factors seem to play into these cases.
Some health experts, who had not seen any of the local students, theorized that this mystery appeared to be a case of conversion disorder and mass psychogenic illness, also known as mass hysteria. That explanation was given for to another widely publicized case involving high school girls suffering tics in Le Roy, N.Y. The diagnosis came under intense scrutiny.
One of the leading theories for a biological cause is PANDAS, Pediatric autoimmune neurological disorders that are associated with strep infections. This causes autoimmune reactions in the brain. This speaks to what one of the doctors on “Fox and Friends Weekend” Sunday live said. It has been going on too long and it might be time to look at an anti-viral or an antibiotic as a precautionary measure. It has taken too long to find the cause, so it’s better to have the basis covered.
“Fox and Friends Weekend” on Sunday live also mentioned that Danvers was the location for one of the most noted mass hysteria cases in the nation’s history, the Salem Witch hunt. This was before the town was named Danvers, it was known as Salem Village.
Whatever the reason behind these tics and chronic hiccups, it has to be weighing heavily on the parents of the kids right now as it has been going on for almost a year. Will there be long term problems of whatever this is for going untreated for such a long time?