Title

A Probable Case of Leprosy from Colonial Period St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Southeastern Caribbean

Published In

International Journal of Paleopathology

Document Type

Citation

Publication Date

3-1-2022

Abstract

Objective

To document and differentially diagnose facial pathology found in an isolated skull from St. Vincent and the Grenadines, southeastern Caribbean. To directly date this individual using radiocarbon dating.

Materials

Isolated skull recovered from Petite Mustique Island.

Methods

Describe facial pathology occurring in this individual and compare with known diseases or disease processes that impact the craniofacial complex.

Results

Features of the rhinomaxillary syndrome are present, indicating a diagnosis of leprosy. Dating places the time of death to the late 18th or early 19th centuries.

Conclusions

Analysis of the rhinomaxillary syndrome produces a diagnosis of early-stage leprosy in an individual that correlates with the apparent attempt to locate a leprosarium on Petite Mustique Island in the first decade of the 19th century.

Significance

Location and time corroborate historical records of at least one attempt to locate a leprosarium on Petite Mustique Island. Only directly dated individual with leprosy in the western hemisphere and possibly the earliest yet recorded.

Limitations

This is an isolated find that is archaeologically unprovenienced.

Rights

© 2021 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

DOI

10.1016/j.ijpp.2021.10.004

Persistent Identifier

https://archives.pdx.edu/ds/psu/36766

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