Stressed woman thought she was French

By | December 13, 2006

The mind is fascinating, isn’t it? We learn so much from special cases where something specific goes wrong.

Stressed 2A Bath woman convinced herself she was French after she developed a rare disorder.

Louise Clarke, 30, a recruitment consultant, babbled away in French for weeks, according to the Sun. She demanded croissants, rang her pals to tell them she was living in Paris and even invited them over. Louise said: “It might sound funny to others, but suddenly thinking you are French is terrifying.”

She had been in France four years before becoming one of only four people in Britain, and 200 in the world, to be diagnosed with Susac’s syndrome. The brain disorder, which can be brought on by stress, is thought to affect blood vessels leading to the brain, ears and eyes and can scramble memories.

Louise is now controlling it with steroids and other medication and has been told it can last up to five years.

She said: “It was a really tough time for my family. At one point my sister discovered I had phoned all my friends and told them to come and visit me in Paris. She had to ring them all back to explain what had happened.” – anova

Well, Susac’s syndrome does not make people think that they are from France, but along with hearing loss and vertigo there can be confusion and personality changes.

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