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Historical birth deformities. Historical artwork of three types of congenital (present from birth) deformities. The presence of extra arms and legs (upper centre) is usually due to the presence of a parasitic twin. This is a type of conjoined twin where the weaker twin has no brain or heart and is present only as extra body parts. Shortened and deformed limbs (lower right) is called phocomelia. Bilateral hip dislocation, exposed intestines and a skull deformity (lower left) are also possible. Birth deformities can result from genetic defects or drugs or toxic chemicals. Artwork published in Physica Curiosa (G. Schott, Germany, 1662).
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