Girl Has Sneezed 20 Times a Minute for Last Month

Doctors say the condition might be stress-related
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 7, 2015 8:09 AM CDT

A girl in Angleton, Texas, started sneezing in spurts about a month ago. "I thought it was like, oh, I'm just allergic to something," 12-year-old Katelyn Thornley tells Fox 26. But now she can't stop—to the tune of 20 times a minute, or thousands of times a day. Playing her clarinet is out of the question, and Katelyn can't even go to school. "I'm constantly in pain with my abdomen, my legs are hurting because I've been weak, and I can barely eat," she says, per CBS DFW. She's visited six doctors who've ruled out allergies or a virus, though some suggest she may be suffering from a stress-related condition. "Anything you talk to her about that irritates her—you can see it spike," her dad says. "It's hard to watch."

A neurologist who evaluated Katelyn suggests the sneezing may be a kind of tic, since Katelyn says an itch in her nose is eased with sneezing, reports Fox News. Medication is available, he adds. While Katelyn finds some relief in sleep, she has to take Benadryl and listen to the Beatles to doze off. "Sometimes I wish I could leave my body for a little while so I could watch myself sleep," she says, "because even in my dreams, I sneeze." In the end, "I don't care what they do, I just want it to stop going on for too long," says Katelyn, who hopes to one day look back and say, "You know, I was once on TV for sneezing." (Let's hope her situation ends up better than "Hiccup Girl's.")

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