It’s called the nodding disease, a mysterious illness that has infected more than 3,000 children in Northern Uganda.
The symptoms? It begins as a string of epilepsy-like seizures, from which the disease gets its name. But with each subsequent seizure, it progresses to include confusion, inability to eat, and a deterioration of personality and cognitive ability.
Sufferers occasionally vanish, only to be found wandering about in the fields, and some are mysteriously compelled to start fires.
“…to protect her children, Lagat ties them up when she leaves.”
Officials haven’t been able to uncover the cause, or the cure, of this profoundly disturbing illness. They do, however, believe it may have something to do with parasitic worms, or even an extreme nutritional deficiency.
Whatever the case may be, we can only hope a solution is found. Thankfully, it’s not known to be contagious, for now, but it certainly shouldn’t be ignored.
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