face value

One of my favourite shows these days is ‘The Project’ (another (surprise) favourite is ‘I Will Survive’, but I might leave that for another post). I don’t tend to watch missed episodes online or that sort of thing, but it’s a show that I’ll watch whenever I’m home to watch it because it’s always entertaining and informative.

Anyway, they had this really interesting feature story last night. It was about a condition called prosopagnosia, which basically refers to having difficulty recognising faces (even though actual eyesight is normal/ok). This can include the faces of friends and family, and (if I remember correctly) affects about 2% (?) of the population.

Before that story, I had no idea that such a condition existed. It never crossed my mind that such a condition could exist (you have to admit, it’s not your typical medical problem). I think ‘The Project’ regularly do stories like that, and it’s one of the reasons why I like the show so much – they cover the big stories of the day, but also take the time to shine a light on lesser known but equally important matters.

Anyway, it got me thinking about how many other things might be diagnosable medical conditions in the guise of normal-ish problems. You could have a medical condition and not know about it until someone decides that it is a problem and gives it a name.

Sometimes it seems like we only got taught about the medical conditions for which we have (pharmacological) treatments…

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