A Russian woman has become the latest victim of the “sleeping illness” – which has affected over 100 people from a small village in Kazakhstan since 2011.
Sufferers of the illness fall asleep for no apparent reason and can stay asleep for days at a time if nobody wakes them.
Doctors and researchers baffled
Those victims of the illness randomly fall asleep. They do not know when it will strike. They may be driving a car, at work or at school. When they wake they often suffer hallucinations and memory loss.
The Moscow Times reports:
Speculations about the roots of the disease abound, with theories including mass psychosis, poisoning, insect bites, alien invasion and the radioactive effects of an abandoned Soviet-era uranium mine in the area.
But researchers have found no trace of any anomalies, poisons or elevated radiation levels around the village, nor any abnormal test results in the sufferers — except for the fact that they just stay asleep, according to media reports.
The official name for the illness is “encephalopathy of unknown etiology” — or, in layman’s terms, a brain disorder that nobody can explain.
“We have ruled out infections, we checked blood and spinal fluid, nothing is there,” doctor Kabdrashit Almagambetov from Esil, the capital of the district, told The Siberian Times
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