Morgellons Disease is a rare disorder that afflicts the skin and in turn, the mental state of the person with the syndrome. Morgellons has created a much of panic within the medical community, not just in the USA, when it was first discovered, but in other countries across the world as well.
It is characterized by tiny fibers arising from the pores of the skin, which the patient is very sensitive towards and in some cases, exaggerates the indications presented.
However, upon investigation, some doctors have concluded that no infectious pests prompt the abnormal growths on the skin, claiming that only cotton or fabric material residue was found, meaning most likely that the patient was imagining such instances. This is categorised as delusional parasitosis.
Contrary to this, certain medical experts have only witnessed sudden eruptions on the skin of the patient, with no signs of cognitive decline, thus terming the sickness as an unexplained dermopathy.
Few other healthcare experts have occasionally confirmed the presence of familiar microbial organisms, such as Borrelia bacterium species, that triggers Lyme disease. Also Read: Lyme Disease: Causes, Symptoms And Treatment
People affected by Morgellons disease report that thin filaments abruptly project out of various regions on the skin, both from normal-sized pores as well as injured areas.
Moreover, as this ailment progresses, the feeling of discomfort all over the skin intensifies, as though something live is crawling or stinging underneath the exterior layer of the body. This, in turn, instigates severe physical discomfort, excessive scratching of the skin, in addition to depression, stress and anxiety, in the affected person. Also Read: Anxiety: Causes, Symptoms And Treatment
It is hence vital to seek immediate medical care, as soon as any irregular growths are noticed on the skin, to ensure timely treatment and optimal recovery of the patient.
What Causes Morgellons Disease?
The exact cause of Morgellons disease has not yet been discovered. Furthermore, research efforts to deduce the underlying reason behind this unusual illness have also been hindered, due to the contradicting reports by doctors who have diagnosed similar anomalies in patients.
This condition was first reported by Mary Leitao in 2002 when her son exhibited uncommon fibrous strands that were growing from underneath his skin.
Not satisfied with numerous physicians stating that it was a case of delusion on her son’s part, she termed the malady as “Morgellons Disease”, from a 17th-century medical manuscript which describes “a situation of black hairs randomly growing out of the skin known as the Morgellons”.
The distinguishing signs associated with Morgellons disease comprise:
- Miniscule thread-like structures protruding our of wounded or healthy regions of skin, generally in white, black, red or blue colours
- Agonizing sensation of an object creeping or crawling beneath the outermost body tissue layer
- Prominent stinging or biting feeling in the affected portions of skin
Often reported and correlated indicators of Morgellons disease include:
- Trouble sleeping and insomnia
- Inability to concentrate at home or work
- Undue worrying and anxiety
- Low moods and depression
- Excessive lethargy, fatigue, along with poor memory
- Unbearable joint pain
- Constant urge to itching the irritated vicinities of skin
Although Morgellons disease has been reported in both men and women of all age groups, from kids to young adults and even the elderly, particular attributes make a person more prone to acquiring this bizarre syndrome, such as:
- Already suffering from Lyme disease
- Having been through prior incidents of direct contact with a tick, possibly carrying an infectious agent
- Possessing concrete proof in the form of a blood test analysis, showing evidence of a tick bite
- Displaying a pre-existing health anomaly of hypothyroidism
Diagnosis And Treatment
The doctor inspects the spots on the skin wherein fibrous growths have occurred in a haywire manner. Furthermore, the physician also conducts a behavioural analysis, to gauge if the patient is in a mentally stable state.
Depending on the outcome of the diagnostic assays, the appropriate treatment is initiated.
In case any sign of bacterial infection is detected, the doctor prescribes a stringent course of antibiotics to be taken long-term, to effectively curb filamentous projections, mend the sores on the skin and heal the damaged regions.
However, if it is confirmed that no microbes are prompting the strand-like protuberances on the skin and it is mostly a delusion formed in the mind of the patient, then psychiatric counselling is given. If required, antipsychotic drugs are also prescribed, to assist in alleviating anxiety, depression in the patient and improve mood, memory.