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Shvoong Home>Science>Genetic Anomalies Summary

Genetic Anomalies

Book Summary   by:educaweb     Original Authors: George M. Gould ; Walter L. Pyle
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But evento such, no less than to the most naive-minded, the strange and exceptional isof absorbing interest, and it is often through the extraordinary that thephilosopher gets the most searching glimpses into the heart of the mystery ofthe ordinary. The very names applied by the early anatomists to many structuresso widely separated from the organs of generation as were those of the brain,give testimony of the state of mind that led to and dominated the practice ofdissection. . As theadvances of physiology enlightened the mind as to the true nature of themenstrual period, and the age of superstition gradually disappeared, theintense interest in menstruation vanished, and now, rather than being held in fearand awe, the physicians of to-day constantly see the results of copulationduring this period. The uncontrollable desire of the husband and the mercenaryaims of the prostitute furnish examples of modern disregard. Van Swieten quotesthe history of a case of suppression of the menstrual function in which therewere convulsive contractions of the body, followed by paralysis of the rightarm. Menstruationfrom the Breasts.--The mammae were large and painful, and the accompanyingsymptoms were those of ordinary menstruation. This happened just at the time ofthe beginning of the menstrual epoch. The accompanying figures, Plate 1, showthe breast in the ordinary state and at the time of the anomalous discharge. Blairrelates the history of a case of vicarious menstruation attended withconjunctivitis and opacity of the cornea. Allport reports the history of a casein which there was recession of the gingival margins and alveolar processes,the consequence of amenorrhea. Krishaber speaks of a case of lingualmenstruation at the epoch of menstruation. Pechlin offers an example from thefoot; Boerhaave from the skin of the hand; Ephemerides from the knee; Albertusfrom the foot; Zacutus Lusitanus from the left thumb; Bartholinus a curiousinstance from the hand; and the Ephemerides another during pregnancy from theankle. Postspeaks of a very peculiar case of edema of the arm alternating with themenstrual discharge. Verduc details the history of two cases from the top ofthe head, and Kerokring cites three similar instances, one of which wasassociated with hemorrhage from the hand. Forster speaks of a menstrual ulcerof the face, and Moses two of the head. Dupuytren speaks of denudation of theskin from a burn, with the subsequent development of vicarious catamenia fromthe seat of the injury. Barrett speaks of a case of vicarious menstruation bythe rectum. Zacutus Lusitanus relates the history of a case of uterineocclusion, with the flow from the lips of the cervix. Theoccurrence of menstruation after removal of the uterus or ovaries is frequentlyreported. Parvin gives portraits showing the venous congestion anddiscoloration of the lips. Instancesof migratory menstruation, the flow moving periodically from the ordinary passageto the breasts and mammae, are found in the older writers. The cause wasinexplicable, and the unfortunate victim was the subject of deep chagrin, andwas afflicted with melancholia.
VicariousMenstruation in the Male.--The flow was abundant on the first day, diminishedon the second, and ceased on the third. No careful obstetrician will denypregnancy solely on the regular occurrence of the menstrual periods, any morethan he would make the diagnosis of pregnancy from the fact of the suppressionof menses. In the consideration of this subject, we must bear in mind theinfluence of climate and locality on the time of the appearance ofmenstruation. Clark, Wall, and the Lancet give descriptions of cases at theninth month. The mammae and labia had all the appearance of establishedpuberty, and the pubes and axillae were covered with hair. Instancesof protracted menstruation are, as a rule, reliable, the individuals themselvesbeing cognizant of the nature of true menstruation, and themselves furnishingthe requisite information as to the natureand periodicity of the discharge inquestion. This late menstruation had all the sensible characters of the earlyone. She had all the appearance and development of a girl of seventeen. TheJournal de Scavans, 1684, contains the report of the case of a boy, whosurvived, being born to a mother of nine years. To complete the story, thefather of this child was a boy of fifteen. The father of the child was a boyonly fourteen years of age. Tarenta records the history of the case of a womanwho menstruated and bore children when past the age of sixty. Wallace speaks ofa woman in the Isle of Orkney bearing children when past the age of sixty. Thefather of the child is seventy-four years old, and the mother and child aredoing well." Guillemeau,the surgeon of the French king, tells of a girl of eighteen, who was broughtbefore the French officials in Paris, in 1607, on the citation of her husbandof her inability to allow him completion of the marital function. Simmons ofSt. Lombard mentions an observation of complete occlusion of the vagina in awoman, the mother of 4 living children and pregnant for the fifth time. Thefundamental condition of fecundity being the union of a spermatozoid and anovum, the object of artificial impregnation is to further this union byintroducing semen directly to the fundus of the uterus. The same bullet hadapparently penetrated the left side of the abdomen of the elder young lady,midway between the umbilicus and the anterior superior spinous process of theilium, and had become lost in the abdomen. The patient was the mother of ninechildren, the youngest of which was three years old. Both the parents wereperfect types of the black African negro.
Published: November 30, 2006   
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