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POLANDS SYNDROME There is a rare and perplexing congenital condition known today as Polands Syndrome This extremely unusual disorder that is present at birth falls very near and dear to my heart I will explain in later paragraphs An anatomy student by the name of Alfred Poland made the first documented observation in 1841 at Guys Hospital in London Alfred Poland discovered this extraordinary and unexplored abnormality while dissecting the cadaver of a convict that was hung for murder The description Alfred Poland first provided was that of a congenital thoracic anomalies involving the pectoralis major and pectoralis minor with additional abnormalities on the affected side of the body ipsilateral consisting of webbed or fused phalanges syndactyly The term Polands Syndactyly was used to describe this disorder until 1967 when Baudinne renamed it Polands Syndrome It was felt that the condition would be more accurate if referred to as a syndrome because there were many anomalies then just syndactyly Today the laymens definition of Polands Syndrome consists of a developmental disorder that is present at birth It is characterized by the absence or underdevelopment of chest muscles pectoralis major pectoralis minor and abnormally short webbed fingers or absence of middle phalanges Additional finding might include underdeveloped or absence of one nipple or breast on the affected side More extreme cases exhibit upper underdeveloped ribs and or an abnormally short arm with underdeveloped forearm bones Unfortunately the limitation of Polands Syndrome deformity doesnt always cease here The medical society has documented isolated cases over the past 100 years of chest wall disfigurement lung herniation and spine curvature Abnormalities involving the clavicle scapula kidney testes heart and associated occurrences of leukemia were also observed in patients with Polands Syndrome The most recent medical studies given on this irregularity in the past 40-50 years has confirmed that Polands Syndrome begins within the thorax and is confined unilaterally
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