1Priapism – Persistent Erection
Priapus, the extremely well-hung God for which it gets its name
This is one boner that's not particularly fun and in fact is downright dangerous. A priapism is defined as an erection that lasts more than 4 hours (and you're not working on a porn movie). There are many things that can cause a priapism, including leukemia, sickle cell anemia, and even the bite from a black widow spider. It can also occur due to an injury. One 22-year-old man from Dublin recently endured a priapism that lasted for SEVEN WEEKS due to a bicycle accident. (Kids, listen to what the Viagra commercial says: if it persists for more than 4 hours, call a doctor, as you could die!)
2Persistent Genital Arousal Disorder (PGAD)
Kim Ramsey has 100 orgasms a day (not by choice).
This is another condition that sounds sexy, but also isn't very much fun. Persistent Genital Arousal Disorder (PGAD) was first diagnosed in 2001 and is a very rare condition that affects primarily women, but men can get it too.
It is not known what causes it, but it has been brought about by injury and is also linked to anxiety and depression. Some women can experience hundreds of orgasms daily, others feel like they're constantly on the edge. All of them experience a great amount of pain and personal embarrassment. In 2012, two women were reported to have killed themselves and there is currently no completely effective treatment.
3Face Blindness or Prospagnosia
Have you ever looked at someone and thought you recognized them but can't place it?
Probably. But what about looking at someone and not recognized them, even if they were your own mother?
That's what happens to people who suffer from Prospagnoisa, or Face Blindness. This occurs in some form in 1 out of every 50 people and some people do not even realize they have it (until they get slapped in the face). Do you have prosopagnosia? Take this test to see!
4Anterograde Amnesia – Teenager Can't Remember The Day Before
Because of a lack of oxygen during birth, Ricky Dean from Taunton, England has an unusual condition where he cannot remember things that happened to him the day before.
Much like the movie Memento, he cannot remember who he is, who his friends are, or even that he's supposed to brush his teeth. Fortunately, his loving parents take good care of him (he's 19 now) and he wears an iPhone around his neck, which contains reminders and helps him navigate the world. “He's a compassionate, thoughtful young chap and we're very proud of him,” his mother was quoted as saying.
5Hyperthymestia – People Who Can Remember Everything
Marilu wins every marital argument
The opposite problem of #4 is called Hypermthymestia, and is an extremely rare condition where people seem to be able to remember every detail about nearly every moment in their life. If you give them a date, they will tell you the day of the week it was, the weather, what they were wearing, and other mundane details as if it were yesterday. There are only 6 known cases of this problem, one of which is celebrity Marilu Henner, star of the 1970s show Taxi. Watch her segment on 60 Minutes below:
6Synesthesia – Incongruous Sensations
It's been described by someone who has it as “sensory interplay.” Synesthesia causes people to see, taste, or even smell things that would normally not have these properties (like music or numbers). This has been an advantage to sommelier Jaime Smith, who sees shapes and colors when he smells something. Another woman, Taria Camerino is a chef who uses her synesthesia to create “flavor profiles” of emotions like satisfaction or discontent. Synesthesia affects 1 in 27 people. If you want to find out if you have it, you can take a test here!
7Methemoglobinemia – The Blue Fugate Family of Kentucky
An undated, colorized photo of the Fugate family
Martin Fugate wasn't sad, but he was blue when he arrived in Trouble Creek in 1920. This was caused by methemoglobinemia, a condition which restricts the flow of oxygen around the body, causing the azure pallor (but are usually fine otherwise).
Fugate married Elizabeth Smith, who wasn't blue but carried the recessive gene. Four of seven children were blue, and due to the remoteness of their village and societal norms which allowed them to marry cousins, their children ended up having dozens of offspring with the condition. The family's story is written about here in more detail: http://www.indiana.edu/~oso/lessons/Blues/TheBlues.htm
It should also be noted, this is different from Paul Karasen, aka “Poppa Smurf” who turned his skin blue from ingesting too much silver.
8Congenital Hypertrichosis – Human Werewolf Syndrome
Congenital Hypertrichosis is the medical term for having an overly hairy body. It's been nicknamed “human werewolf syndrome” even though it has nothing to do with the moon and the people aren't lycanthropes. Its reported to affect only 50 people in the world. The condition has no cure, but is surely traumatic for many; in the 19th and 20th century people with this condition were delegated to being circus sideshow performers. However, one young boy, Pruthviraj Patil, who lives in Mumbai, is reportedly happy, healthy, and popular at school.
9Hutchinson-Gilford Progeria Syndrome or Accelerated Aging
This is extremely rare – 1 in 4 million births – and those suffering from Hutchinson-Gilford Progeria Syndrome age at an extremely rapid pace. It's not known why this occurs and unfortunately there is no cure. Children born with this affliction rarely live longer than 13 years old and often die of a heart attack.
10“Tree Man” Disease – Epidermodysplasia Verruciformis
A person that is suffering from this health problem isn't turning into a plant. Actually, this very rare condition is caused by a sensitivity to human papillomaviruses (HPVs) that cause an abundance of warts, which look and feel like tree bark.
Dede Kosawa was an Indonesian man who lived with this condition for 20 years and was nicknamed the Tree Man. If he would get them cut off, they would quickly return. In 2008, doctors from the US began treating Dede. He reportedly made a lot of progress but was never able to fully rid himself of the affliction.