Balance the Humours

There is a spate of “Tourettes-like” symptoms – tics and involuntary movements – among a particular group of girls in the LeRoy school district. Convinced that these girls aren’t faking it (I have no idea how), public health officials have reached a logical conclusion for what’s behind this:

…but at least one local expert in the field of movement disorders stated Thursday that what most of these girls experienced is likely the result of mass hysteria.

It’s describing a mass psychogenic (psychosomatic) group of symptoms shared among a large population, but doesn’t it sound medieval? Doesn’t that sound like the treatment would involve leeches or a stoning or visiting a shrine. In other words, it sounds like a junk, throwaway diagnosis that loosely translates into “we don’t know what the hell is going on” and has the added bonus of being backhandedly sexist.

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