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BBC Article - Re 'Mass hysteria in Malaysia' - SW comments

Discussion in 'Health News and Research unrelated to ME/CFS' started by Sly Saint, Aug 15, 2019.

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  1. Sly Saint

    Sly Saint Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    The mystery of screaming schoolgirls in Malaysia
    11 August 2019
    full article here
    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-48850490
     
    Last edited: Aug 15, 2019
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  2. strategist

    strategist Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    In an alternate universe (maybe this one too), in Malaysia a group of wise men are explaining in the press how demonic possession produces real symptoms that are often mistaken for mass hysteria. They also talk about the stigma of demonic possession and how this leads to people being overly skeptical of the idea or to even refuse to acknowledge that their symptoms are being caused by demons.
     
  3. alex3619

    alex3619 Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    Is it time to translate and update the Hammer of Witches?

    Saying that mass hysteria has an old history is just saying these events have an old history. The label may not represent any real world discrete clinical entity. Now we do know people can panic, and when panicking they can exaggerate, but mass hysteria goes beyond that.

    The thing about events that are not explained is that they are not explained. Its a tautology, but also a reminder. Putting forward alternative explanations means finding objective evidence. There is not sufficient objective evidence for mass hysteria, that I am aware of, to consider it as more than a potential and hypothetical explanation.

    The other things is there may be issues rooted in brain biology, due to evolutionary pressures and lethal epidemics, poisonings and so on, that make people vulnerable to panicking. Just hydrogen sulphide releases, from oceans or volcanic vents, might have been enough to do this. The appropriate reaction to large scale hydrogen sulphide release would be to run. Anyone being "sensible" and cautious would die. There is a reason we can easily smell even tiny amounts of hydrogen sulphide, and we instinctively hate it. Sometimes panic really is the best survival strategy, though in most situations in the modern world its close to the worst.
     
    Last edited: Aug 15, 2019
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  4. strategist

    strategist Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    Yes, mass hysteria is not just panic spreading through a group. It claims to explain all sorts of symptoms that are difficult to explain with panic or exaggeration.

    To me a more plausible explanation is a combination of panic spreading in the presence of some physical cause of symptoms. If for example, people ate poisoned food, and the nature of the poison was such that it wasn't apparent it was related to having eaten something poisonous, there could be quite likely an outbreak of physical symptoms plus the panic caused by being confronted with an significant unknown danger (as well as people coming up with possibly weird cultural-specific explanations for what occurred).
     
    Last edited: Aug 15, 2019
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  5. DokaGirl

    DokaGirl Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    The "old history" concept doesn't make anything factual, evidence based, safe, or logical, just because it's been around a long time.
     
  6. Floyd

    Floyd New Member

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    I have, on a few occasions, looked up evidence for mass hysteria. I can never find any. All I seem to get are historical examples. Any recent example never has any evidence attached to it, just a note on the similarities between this phenomena and historical examples that are claimed to (possibly) be mass hysteria. This then is added on to the historical examples. So it appears to me that we just have ongoing cases of confirmation bias. The same seems to be the case when I look up evidence for most cases that are assumed to be psychogenic. Never any evidence, just a series of cases that are then presented through the lens of the diagnosing doctor’s prejudice.

    So is there any evidence for mass hysteria? Does anybody know?
    What about psychogenic illness? Can we demonstrate the these things objectively ever, in principle.
     
  7. alex3619

    alex3619 Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    As you know there is no objective diagnostic test. Its mythical, supported by convincing rhetoric, with a total lack of evidence and usually unsound reasoning. I could make the same claims to causation but claim its invisible pink fluffy unicorns doing it. No evidence for that either. Gosh, does that mean I am right? What if I can get hundreds, no, forget that, thousands to endorse this obvious Truth?

    I have been looking at psychogenic claims for over a decade now. They keep forcing the same ideas into new packages, with new labels, as soon as the old ones are visibly in decline. FND and MUS are the current incarnations. They both look plausible at the superficial level, but quickly slide into unproven psychogenic claims and treatments.
     
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  8. rvallee

    rvallee Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    Just like Bigfoot sightings and the emergence of smartphones with HD cameras. Big coincidence, surely.

    That's usually a huge sign of a clear myth, but Bigfoot fanatics are no more deterred than hysteria fanatics. Actually, it seems like while Bigfoot enthusiasts are on the down low, the opposite is happening with hysteria, where the lack of evidence is somehow turned into growing belief and it's BOOM TIME for the fake illness industry. Weird.
     
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  9. DokaGirl

    DokaGirl Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    @alex3619

    It's marketing, as you describe it: "They keep forcing the same ideas into new packages, with new labels, as soon as the old ones are visibly in decline".

    It would be better for all if they turned their hand to marketing new dish washing liquid, or cereals, rather than creating new psych names for biomedical diseases.
     
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  10. Snowdrop

    Snowdrop Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    The fact that psychiatry is in complete accord with Shamans and the like with regard to psychological underpinnings of these outbreaks seems perfectly natural to me.

    Much of psychiatry will be seen as Shamanism and cultish following of charismatic leaders while real scientists continue to work toward a better understanding of how our bodies function. The real science of hard labouring proving things wrong and then continuing to search for real concrete facts.
     
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  11. alex3619

    alex3619 Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    I wrote a satirical blog on psychiatry as shamanism on Phoenix Rising, some years ago.
     
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  12. Trish

    Trish Moderator Staff Member

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    And I wrote one on BPS as a religion.
    And the other day I compared LP with fictional magic.

    They are such an easy target for satire.
     
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  13. Snowdrop

    Snowdrop Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    @alex3619 and @Trish

    Yes, and I expect for those people who have never had to experience the medical system the way we have it probably seems like we're exaggerating or even being quite silly.

    I see those posts as pretty much revealing the true nature of modern psych with laser precision.
     
  14. Simbindi

    Simbindi Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    I think the rollout of the IAPT Medically Unexplained Symptoms agenda is going to throw a lot more patients into our 'reality'. It will be interesting to watch how this unfolds with other patient groups. I wonder if they will start looking to us for some guidance in their 'brave new world'?
     
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  15. NelliePledge

    NelliePledge Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    IAPT is pretty well established as I understand it the CBT I had in 2015 was under IAPT It appears to have begun in 2008 https://www.england.nhs.uk/mental-health/adults/iapt/iapt-at-10/
     
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  16. Snowdrop

    Snowdrop Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    I just wish there was some way (and by extension some able people) who could be proactive on this. For some people who will be given IAPT they will believe what they are told at first and will be willing to explore all manner of personal traumas or failings when that has nothing to do with their health problem.

    To me the most insidious aspect of this big plan is the pretending to really listen in an active way. I have no doubt that many therapists do listen and want to help. The real issue is that with active listening (not just hearing what they say and making noises that placate but using critical thinking) they'd realise that even though the person is cooperating they are really not improving. But this would jepordize their work situation.
     
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  17. Simbindi

    Simbindi Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    But the MUS and LTC part is still being rolled out. Additionally, in the pilot areas many of the projects were quite different from the form it is going to take now. My CCG are actually putting off implementing it as long as they can, but it is being imposed on them from NHS England (I was involved as a lay member on the local Integrated Personal Commissioning group so am aware of some of the local research in this area).
     
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  18. Simbindi

    Simbindi Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    Well, at least we have David Tuller on our side, thanks to the M.E. community!

    Sorry, that should be - at least we have a man called David Tuller on our side...
     
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  19. Sarah94

    Sarah94 Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    What does LTC mean?
     
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  20. chrisb

    chrisb Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    Long term conditions?
     
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