This thread is for collecting various things related to the healing arts and injuries and diseases. The Plague Codex, Several healing organizations, and a variety of really gross disease posts inspired this codex/ scroll.
If you have a submission related to illness, injury, and the healing arts, make sure to link it there.
Additional Ideas (4)
Note: This is more of a psychological/ spiritual disorder than a proper disease, but it is quite cool.
Jerusalem syndrome From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
The Jerusalem syndrome is the name given to a group of mental phenomena involving the presence of either religiously themed obsessive ideas, delusions or other psychosis-like experiences, that are triggered by, or lead to, a visit to the city of Jerusalem.
The best known, although not the most prevalent manifestation of the Jerusalem syndrome, is the phenomenon whereby a person who seems previously balanced and devoid of any signs of psychopathology,
becomes psychotic after arriving in Jerusalem. The psychosis is characterised by an intense religious theme and typically resolves to full recovery after a few weeks, or after being removed from the area.
Dr. Yair Bar El et al. claimed1 that there is a specific syndrome which emerges in tourists who had no previous psychiatric history. However this has been disputed, especially by Dr. Moshe Kalian and Prof. Eliezer Witztum2,3. They stressed that nearly all of the tourists who demonstrated the described behaviours were already mentally ill prior to their arrival to Jerusalem. Further, of the small proportion alleged to have exhibited spontaneous psychosis after arrival in Jerusalem, there was no evidence presented that they had previously been well.
The syndrome was first clinically described in the 1930s by Jerusalem psychiatrist Heinz Herman and pertains to behaviors exhibited by some visitors to Jerusalem. Whether or not these behaviors specifically arise from visiting Jerusalem is debated, as similar behaviors have been noted at other places of religious and historical importance such as Mecca and Rome (see Stendhal syndrome). It is known that cases of the syndrome had already been observed during the Middle ages, since it was described in the itinerary of Felix Fabri and the biography of Margery Kempe. Other cases were described in the vast literature of visitors to Jerusalem during the 19th century.
The majority of Jerusalem Syndrome patients are harmless and are usually regarded with pity and/or amusement. The most significant exception occurred in August of 1969, when an Australian tourist, Michael Rohan, overwhelmed with a feeling of divine mission, set fire to the al-Aqsa Mosque. His act was followed by citywide rioting. These events helped form the premise of a movie called The Jerusalem Syndrome. However it should be noted that whilst Rohan was both delusional and religious, he met none of the other supposed symptoms of the "syndrome".
Bar-El et al. suggested that at the approach of the year 2000, large numbers of otherwise normal visitors might be affected by a combination of their presence in Jerusalem and the religious significance of the millennium, causing a massive increase in the numbers of Jerusalem syndrome admissions to hospital. Despite a
slight increase in tourist hospitalisations with the rise in total tourism to Jerusalem during the year 2000, the feared epidemic of Jerusalem syndrome never materialised.
The 'classic' Jerusalem syndrome, where a visit to Jerusalem seems to trigger a intense religious psychosis that resolves quickly or on departure, has been a subject of debate in the medical literature2,3,4. Most of the discussion has centred on whether this definition of the Jerusalem syndrome is a distinct form of psychosis, or simply a re-expression of a previously existing psychotic illness that was not picked up by the medical authorities in Israel.
In response to this, Bar-El et al. classified the syndrome into three major types to reflect the different types of interactions between a visit to Jerusalem and unusual or psychosis-related thought processes. However Kalian and Witztum have objected that Bar-El et al. presented no evidence to justify the detailed typology and prognosis presented, and that the types in fact seem to be unrelated rather than different aspects of a syndrome.
Jerusalem syndrome imposed on a previous psychotic illness. This refers to individuals already diagnosed as having a psychotic illness before their visit to Jerusalem. They have typically gone to the city because of the influence of delusional religious ideas, often with a goal or mission in mind which they believe needs to be completed on arrival or during their stay. For example, an affected person may believe himself to be an important historical religious figure, or may be influenced by important religious ideas or concepts (such as causing the second coming of Christ).
Jerusalem syndrome superimposed on and complicated by idiosyncratic ideas. This does not necessarily take the form of mental illness, and may simply be an culturally anomalous obsession with the significance of Jerusalem, either as an individual, or as part of a small religious group with idiosyncratic spiritual beliefs.
Jerusalem syndrome as a discrete form, uncompounded by previous mental illness. This describes the best known type, whereby a previously mentally balanced person becomes psychotic after arriving in Jerusalem. The psychosis is characterised by an intense religious
character and typically resolves to full recovery after a few weeks, or after being removed from the locality. It shares some features with the diagnostic category of a 'brief psychotic episode', although a distinct pattern of behaviours has been noted:
Anxiety, agitation, nervousness and tension, plus other unspecified reactions. Declaration of the desire to split away from the group or the family and to tour Jerusalem alone. Tourist guides aware of the Jerusalem
syndrome and of the significance of such declarations may at this point refer the tourist to an institution for psychiatric evaluation in an attempt to preempt the subsequent stages of the syndrome. If unattended, these stages are usually unavoidable. A need to be clean and pure: obsession with taking baths and showers; compulsive fingernail and toenail cutting. Preparation, often with the aid of hotel bed-linen, of a long, ankle-
length, toga-like gown, which is always white. The need to scream, shout, or sing out loud psalms, verses from the Bible, religious hymns or spirituals. Manifestations of this type serve as a warning to hotel personnel and tourist guides, who should then attempt to have the tourist taken for professional treatment. Failing this, the two last stages will develop. A procession or march to one of Jerusalem's holy places. Delivery of a `sermon' in a holy place. The sermon is usually very
confused and based on an unrealistic plea to humankind to adopt a more wholesome, moral, simple way of life.
Bar-El et al. reported 42 such cases over a period of 13 years, but in no case were they able to actually confirm that the condition was temporary.
During a period of 13 years (1980-1993) for which admissions to the Kfar Shaul Mental Health Centre in Jerusalem were analysed, it was reported that 1200 tourists with severe, Jerusalem-themed mental problems were referred to this clinic. Of these, 470 were admitted to hospital. On average, 100 such tourists have been seen annually, 40 of them requiring admission to hospital. About 2 million tourists visit Jerusalem each year. Kalian and Witztum note that as a proportion of the total numbers of tourists visiting the city, this
is not significantly different from any other city.
Whatever we believe the cause, an effect like the Jerusalem syndrome should be in fantasy worlds stronger. With magic, and spirits and whatnot, exceptional places should have a powerful "presence". It is certainly a nice thing to do to a character... what if one PC suddenly feels the calling? *evil GM smile*
Necrotising arachnidism is the name give to a syndrome of blistering and ulceration or destruction (necrosis) of the skin following spider bites. In some cases, severe illnesses have ensued, with ongoing pain and tissue destruction requiring extensive debridement and skin grafting. Chief among spiders suspected of causing this syndrome in Australia are the white tailed spider (Lampona sp.) and the black window or black house spider (Badumna sp.). Both are commonly found in houses throughout Australia. Anecdotal experience suggests that the majority of people bitten by these spiders will suffer only minor local reactions. As the majority of spider bites are not reported, the proportion of bites that result in necrosis is unknown.
Necrotising Arachnidism is a disease caused by some spiders. Experts arent sure exactly how it is caused, though its bieng studied. A reaction of SOME spiders poisons can cause someones skin to literally cease living. Dying, going black and as said, literally rotting the flesh away from the bone. Skin grafting is sometimes required. Worst cases may require amputation of the limb.
* Note - Some pictures are quite graphic, showing skin destruction. If you don't wish to see such pictures, don't open the links.
More info: http://www.pharmacology.unimelb.edu.au/avruweb/na.htm *
Pictures: http://www.brownreclusespider.net/BitePhotos.htm *
TTX, the main component of pufferfish poison, is a possible key to Haiti's mysterious zombies. These "living dead", buried after succumbing to sudden illness in the prime of life, reappear in other villiages as the witless slaves of voodoo witchdoctors. The witchdoctors may have mastered the use of pufferfish extract, probably diluted in some sort of potion. Paralysed and scarcely breathing, their recruits would appear dead. But they could be exhumed soon after burial, revived, and given Hallucinogenic plant drugs to keep them in a dreamlike, obedient state.
Pufferfish victims have probably been buried alive in japan. Last century, there were several reports of people recovering just in time, as they were about to be interred or cremated. Some had an anguishing recall of everything that had been said in their hearing.
Resource: Readers digest, Australias Dangerous Creatures.
So two weeks after starting the thread, I asked myself, "Hunter, why is nobody posting to this thread." And the answer that floated up out of my subconcious, "Heroes don't get sick, or if they do... they certainly do not die from it."
Well unless they play GURPs, Morrow Project, or have an annoying Fringeworthy GM, but those are another story.
PCs should be "the heroes" of the story. They should die in dramatic fashion, rather than just closing their eyes one day while shivering with fever. So plagues are things in the background to add tension or give them something to do. Regular diseases are things other people get, or if they get it they certainly do not die from it.
But they can just get sick. Diseases can bring tension. One of the Greatest story arcs in Spider Man's history, was fighting Dr. Octopus while fighting off the flu, in the rain. What would of been a fairly standard fight, expanded into several issues, because he could not stop him because of the pain, the high fever, the slowed reflexes, so there were several engagements. He eventually took the doctor down but at great risk and personal sacrifice... it was dramatic... it was powerful... it was scary that a hero was almost killed because he had a case of the flu.
So other diseases can be used to enhance the tension and difficulty of a scene. So a simple trip into the mountains to get a spell component flower becomes difficult as the entire troupe comes down with the disease (which they are getting the flower to cure)... reducing their effectiveness... unable to function normally - small speedbump monsters become major threats.
There you have it. Diseases and things for the Player character.
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