Wednesday, August 29, 2012


The 1st case of Fibrodysplasia Ossificans Progressiva (FOP)

In 1692, French doctor Guy Patin was the first physician to record a case. The first thorough documentation of the disease was in 1740, when a London physician described an adolescent with large swellings of bone on his body in a letter to the Royal College of Physicians [source: IFOPA].
The best known FOP case is that of Harry Eastlack (1933–1973). His condition began to develop at the age of 10 and by the time of his death from pneumonia in November 1973, six days before his 40th birthday, his body had completely ossified, leaving him able to move only his lips.
Shortly before Eastlack's death, he made it known that he wanted to donate his body to science, in the hope that in death, he would be able to help find a cure for this little-understood and particularly devastating disease. Pursuant to his wishes, his preserved skeleton is now kept at the Mütter Museum in Philadelphia, and has proven to be an invaluable source of information in the study of FOP. There have approximately been 700 confirmed cases across the globe from an estimated 2500.

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