Medical Science - Other

Unusual causes of Death



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We're always hearing about the commonplace causes of death. Tragedies such as heart attacks, cancer, and malnourished contribute to a large number of deaths worldwide. While death still remains tragic, there sometimes deaths caused by unusual factors. We're constantly reminded just how many ways human beings are vulnerable.

For instance, the expression "dying of laughter" actually has some truth to it. More specifically, individuals have tied watching television programs and films, even in their sleep. Typically, an increased heart rate results in a heart attack; so be careful when watching your favorite programs! Of course, people are more than safe engaging in laughter, and these cases occur where the heart is more vulnerable to begin with, generally, and are rare even then. Other medically strange deaths have occurred, such as individuals speculated to have chocked on objects as small as a human hair.

A lawyer during the American Civil War, Clement Vallandighan was defending a client against murder charges. Demonstrating how he believed the victim had killed himself, he unknowingly shot himself with what he had thought to be an unloaded firearm. A tragic lesson in the importance of firearm safety. Unfortunately, improper firearm safety is a common cause of death and Vallandighan is only unusual in that given that he was a lawyer and in the courtroom, one would've suspected he would have been more careful.

Other unusual deaths have occurred from excessive and prolonged video game sessions (Strarcraft being a famous culprit), getting sucked out of a plane, and even from swallowing the Bible, and a ship accidentally firing a torpedo on itself. One couple was eaten by bears while in the woods, and shark related deaths are known to occur. A tragedy involving a misdiagnosis caused an organ donation to spread cancer to multiple people - as they were believed to have died from something other than cancer, and tests were not properly done afterward. Thankfully, better procedures have been implemented since to reduce the likelihood of such a tragedy being repeated.

There are all kinds of strange deaths that have occurred, and although all deaths aren't pretty, I have provided unusual cases where the level of violence is minimal. Some of the most truly unusual causes of death have involved gruesome acts often inflicted upon spouses or political rivals. The death of Socrates by hemlock may not seem unusual, but the fact that he refused offers to flee the city and remain alive is perhaps what makes him an unusual case. Either way, we can all take solace in the fact that we are unlikely to meet the unusual fates contained in this article.

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