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Saturday, September 09, 2006


True or False?

Munchausen syndrome is a disease of commoners who believe they are of royal lineage.

FALSE! The rare syndrome describes people who wander from hospital to hospital feigning severe diseases that require dramatic emergency care. The “patient” is always a pathological liar and may even self-mutilate to present symptoms. Once admitted, he or she will often get into violent arguments with staff, pushing for painful diagnostic procedures and needless operations. William McIlhoy, a renowned Munchausen patient, cost the British health system over $4 million dollars over 50 years with 400 operations at 100 hospitals using 22 aliases.

Munchausen syndrome

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