posted on January 11, 2012 23:12
Despite assurances from health officials that the mysterious tics that have afflicted a dozen LeRoy High School girls has nothing to do with the environment, parents remain skeptical..
A community meeting held Wednesday night at LeRoy High School seemed to leave parents with more questions than answers.
"I'm talking about something that comes on in just a couple of weeks," said James DuPont, whose 17-year-old daughter is one of the girls being treated. "These kids are totally normal, and the next thing you know their arms are swinging and they can't control themselves."
DuPont's daughter is one of 12 girls at the school who suddenly and without explanation, began to exhibit involuntary twitches and tics and verbal outbursts.
Dr. Gregory Youbng is with the State Health Department, one of several experts brought in to investigate the LeRoy outbreak.
"We have conclusively ruled out any form of infection or communicable disease and there is no evidence of any environmental factor, " that could cause these symptoms, Young said.
About 150 people attended the informational meeting Wednesday night. Most left frustrated learning that a diagnosis for the aliment has been arrived at, but officials can’t say what it is.
"Because of HIPAA (federal health privacy laws) and because of the limited number of cases in this small community, we really can't comment on the diagnosis that has been given to the children," said Young.
He added that 11 of the 12 children with symptoms are being treated and are improving.
For DuPont, the official explanation left him skeptical.
"This is my daughter and she can't control herself. It's a tear-jerker and hits you right in the gut at the same time. You feel frustrated and helpless because you don't know what you can do. You're just not getting any answers."
Several parents attending seemed to agree on the need for the families to form a support group of their own.