A condition in which the head has been inserted so far into the colo-rectal tract that the anal sphincter traps the nose. In this presentation, the eyes are completely occluded.
Male, 35 to 65 years of age, technical or sales/marketing professional or corporate manager, politician. (Some incidence has also been noted in middle-aged and older male amateur radio operators.)
Impaired vision, loss of contact with environment, isolation from reality. Can lead to severe psychosis if left untreated. Failing the surgical procedure described under "Treatment", prognosis is terminal.
Compromised vision, clouded judgment, inability to visualise abstract concepts beyond the time-worn conventional wisdom, pathological fixations on obsolete (or unconventional but unworkable) ideas, unreasoning "drive to be different".
This is a complex issue. In an advanced state of the condition, the patient is already in an extremely debilitated and distressed state. Palliative measures are thus limited to the administration of psychotropic drugs such as Prozac® to control mood swings.
Patients in the early stages of optoproctosis may respond to the topical application of lubricants to facilitate unaided release of the head. This presupposes a degree of recognition on the patient's part that a problem exists.
The patient cannot remove the head unaided; a surgical procedure somewhat similar to a Caesarean section is indicated. General anaesthesia is required, although outpatient surgery is possible in a healthy patient.
The consent of an adult patient is required for surgery - but if the patient is in denial concerning the condition, informed consent is impossible by definition. Therefore, the skilled hands of medical science must of needs be idle whilst the patient suffers, lingers and ultimately suffocates.
Unfortunately there is no known cure for optoproctosis.
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