Fact List Health Science

25 Interesting Facts About Diseases

Here are 25 Interesting Facts About Diseases.

1-5 Interesting Facts About Diseases

Heart disease

1. Heart disease kills more people per year than cancer, war, terrorism, hunger, suicide, diabetes, respiratory diseases and mental disorders combined. – Source

2. When Syphilis first surfaced, the English called it the ‘French disease’, the French called it the ‘Spanish disease’, Germans called it the ‘French evil’, Russians called it ‘Polish disease’, Poles called it ‘Turkish disease’, Turks called it ‘Christian disease’ and Japan called it ‘Chinese pox.’ – Source

3. During China’s Ming Dynasty, powdered smallpox scabs were blown up the noses of the healthy. The patients would then develop a mild case of the disease and from then on would be immune to it. Although the technique had a 0.5-2.0% mortality rate, it was better than the disease’s 20-30% mortality rate. – Source

4. While many woodland creatures harbor ticks and spread Lyme disease, opossums kill 96.5% of ticks that land on them and that a single opossum may be “hoovering up and killing” 4,000 ticks every week and thereby protecting us from Lyme disease. – Source

5. A lack of toilets costs India more than $50 billion a year, mostly through premature deaths and hygiene-related diseases. – Source

6-10 Interesting Facts About Diseases

NFL players

6. NFL players are three to four times more likely to contract Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease and Lou Gehrig’s disease (ALS) than an average American. – Source

7. During the AIDS epidemic of the 1980s, education about the disease was limited for political reasons. Surgeon General C. Everett Koop ended up infuriating members of both parties after he ordered that every home in America be mailed a letter explaining what AIDS was and how to protect from it. – Source

8. After needing 13 liters of blood for a surgery at the age of 13, a man named James Harrison pledged to donate blood once he turned 18. It was discovered that his blood contained a rare antigen which cured Rhesus disease. He has donated blood a record 1,000 times and saved 2,000,000 lives. – Source

9. Moon Dust cuts through kevlar-like material and is harmful to humans, causing a disease called Moon Hay Fever. – Source

10. Alzheimer’s disease does not affect emotional memory as strongly as informational memory. As a result, Alzheimer’s patients given bad news will quickly forget the news, but will remain sad and have no idea why. – Source

11-15 Interesting Facts About Diseases

Fatal Familial Insomnia

11. Fatal Familial Insomnia takes away your ability to sleep. You sink into horrible psychosis and inevitably die over the course of a few months. There is no cure and there are no viable treatments. – Source

12. Cancers are primarily environmental diseases with 90-95% of cases attributed to environmental factors and 5-10% due to genetics. – Source

13. There is an autoimmune disease which mimics the symptoms of demonic possession, and it has only been identified in the last 10 years. It affects mostly young women and can come on with no pre warnings whatsoever. – Source

14. There exists a treatment for cystic fibrosis that involves actually inhaling genes to attempt to repair the disease. – Source

15. Farmers feed large magnets to cows to prevent “Hardware Disease.” Cow Magnets sit in their “stomach” for the lifetime of the cow and prevent accidentally eaten pieces of metal from lodging in the stomach folds causing illness. – Source

16-20 Interesting Facts About Diseases


16. It has been more than 50 years since Stephen Hawking was diagnosed with motor neuron disease related to ALS. Doctors at that time gave him a life expectancy of two years. – Source

17. In 5,000 years of human history, only 2 diseases have been eradicated: smallpox and rinderpest – Source

18. Millions of bats in North America are dying from a disease called White Nose Syndrome. Scientists don’t know how to treat the illness. In 2008 an estimated 2.4 million pounds of insects went uneaten due to the diminished bat population, causing major strain on agriculture in New England. – Source

19. The doctor who discovered that hand washing prevented the spread of disease was committed to an asylum, where he died after being beaten by the guards. – Source

20. In 1485, a mysterious disease broke out causing people to sweat to death in a matter of hours. The disease claimed the lives of tens of thousands before mysteriously vanishing. – Source

21-25 Interesting Facts About Diseases

Vitamin C

21. Scurvy was documented as a disease by Hippocrates, and Egyptians have recorded its symptoms as early as 1550 BC. The knowledge that consuming foods containing vitamin C is a cure for scurvy has been repeatedly rediscovered and forgotten into the early 20th century. – Source

22. Superior canal dehiscence is a rare medical condition that affects the inner ear and amplifies all internal sounds. It gets to the point where the sound of the eyeballs moving in their sockets sounds like “sandpaper on wood.” – Source

23. There’s a genetic disease called Laron Syndrome that results in short stature, longer life expectancy, and near immunity to cancer and diabetes, amongst other things. – Source

24. A brain disease that devastated communities in Papua New Guinea spread because people ate their dead family members’ brains in ritual cannibalism. People who didn’t die from the disease have a genetic mutation that blocks it. – Source

25. Many common disease causing bacteria are actually harmless bacteria that have been infected by a virus. – Source

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