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Dwarfism and gigantism in historical picture postcards
A collection of 893 historical picture postcards from 1900 to 1935, depicting dwarfs and giants, was analysed from medical and psychosocial viewpoints. In conditions such as 'bird headed dwarfism', achondroplasia, cretinism, so-called Aztecs or pinheads, Grebe chondrodysplasia, and acromegalic gigantism, the disorder could be diagnosed easily. In hypopituitary dwarfism, exact diagnosis was more difficult because of heterogeneity. The most common conditions depicted were pituitary dwarfism and achondroplasia. Most of those with gigantism had pituitary gigantism and acromegaly. Brothers and sisters or parents and their children provided evidence of mendelian inheritance of some of these disorders. The cards suggest that being put on show provided, at least in some cases, social benefits.
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A Enderle J R Soc Med. 1998 May; 91(5): 273â€“278.
Author/Contact: A Enderle
Institution: Orthopaedic Department, Georg-August-University, Goettingen, Germany
Submitted by: admin
Added: Thu Nov 16 2006
Last Modified: Fri Dec 22 2006