Funtabulously Frivolous Friday Five 084

Just when you thought your brain could unwind on a Friday, you realise that it would rather be challenged with some good old fashioned medical trivia FFFF, introducing the Funtabulously Frivolous Friday Five 084

Question 1

What extraordinary sequence of bad luck leads to ocular sparganosis?

Reveal the funtabulous answer

  • First: a black eye.
  • Second: application of a traditional Far Eastern remedy in the form of a frog meat poultice.
  • Third: contamination of the frog with Spirometra tapeworm larvae.

Question 2

Which unfortunate speech disorder led to the social exclusion of a Norwegian WWII bomb blast survivor?

Reveal the funtabulous answer

Dysprosody or Foreign Accent Syndrome.

One of the first case reports of dysprosody was of a 28 year old Norwegian woman, Astrid L, who sustained a shrapnel injury to the left side of her brain during a bombing raid in 1941. She subsequently developed a strong German accent – even though she did not speak German and had never been to Germany – and was shunned by Oslo’s wartime community.

Several dozen cases have since been documented, following traumatic brain injury or stroke.


Question 3

What was in the most lethal packed lunch in modern history?

Reveal the funtabulous answer

Wild duck paste sandwiches.

In 1922, 8 members of a fishing trip to Loch Maree in Scotland fell ill after eating a picnic, mysteriously developing diplopia, dysphagia and respiratory paralysis.

They died one-by-one in the remote Loch Maree Hotel. Each victim had eaten wild duck paste sandwiches: the pot from which these had been made was found to be contaminated with botulism.


Question 4

How were eight Londoners killed by beer on the same day in 1814?

Reveal the funtabulous answer

By drowning and crush injury.

The London Beer Flood of 1814 was the world’s first “beer-nami”.

A 22-foot high vat, holding a million pints of beer, gave way at the Horse Shoe Brewery on Tottenham Court Road. Surrounding vats collapsed in a chain reaction, and a wave of beer – reportedly 15 feet high – swept through the slum of St Giles, demolishing two houses and a pub.


Question 5

Which notorious public health hazard is presented by Glaswegian toilets?

Reveal the funtabulous answer

Various answers could be considered correct.

In 1993, a seminal report from the Western Infirmary A&E Department described 3 cases of severe buttock laceration resulting from the collapse of fractured porcelain lavatory pans. (Reference: Wyatt JP, McNaughton GW, Tullett WM “The collapse of toilets in Glasgow“. Scottish Medical Journal 38 (6): 185. PMID 8146638)

…the authors went on to win an IgNobel Prize for Public Health.

Readers are advised to be on the lookout for tell-tale cracks.


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Funtabulously Frivolous Friday Five

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