Teenage Girls In New York With Mysterious Symptoms Labeled “Conversion Disorder.”

USA Today (1/19, Jayson) reports that “the mysterious symptoms of facial tics and verbal outbursts affecting 12 teenage girls in the small community of LeRoy,” New York “has brought new awareness to a very unfamiliar stress-related condition referred to as ‘conversion disorder.'” David Fassler, MD, a child and adolescent psychiatrist at the University of Vermont in Burlington, explains that “conversion disorder is characterized by problems with voluntary motor or sensory function that suggest a neurological or other general medical condition but aren’t fully consistent with known biological causes or explanations.”

Fassler says that the disorder is more common in women and is related to stress or anxiety. Neurologist Laszlo Mechtler of the Dent Neurologic Institute in Buffalo, who treated 11 of the girls, said, “When conversion disorder occurs in a larger group, it’s called ‘mass psychogenic illness.'”

Posted in In The News.