Header

UZH-Logo

Maintenance Infos

Evidence based palaeopathology: Meta-analysis of Pubmed®-listed scientific studies on pre-Columbian, South American mummies


Dageförde, K L; Vennemann, M; Rühli, Frank J (2014). Evidence based palaeopathology: Meta-analysis of Pubmed®-listed scientific studies on pre-Columbian, South American mummies. HOMO Journal of Comparative Human Biology, 65(3):214-231.

Abstract

The aim of this study was to review all Pubmed(®)-listed palaeopathological studies performed on pre-Columbian South American mummies. A total of 61 studies were found (1977-2005). Review criteria included e.g. method of examination, method of mummification, palaeopathological diagnoses and individual age of mummies as well as dating, which ranged from 7500 to 500 years BP, mainly (if reported) originating from the Chiribaya and Chinchorro cultures. The average age of the 99 individually reported mummies was about 25 years. Only six studies included computed tomography, thirteen studies used classical radiography as an examination method. Three studies analysed parasite related diseases, especially caused by Trypanosoma cruzi. Among all of the reported infectious diseases (n=9), there were seven studies presenting cases of tuberculosis. The results were also compared inter-culturally. In 61 studies (37 epidemiological and 24 case reports) more than 6400 mummified individuals were analysed. By contrast, meta-analytic data for ancient Egyptian mummies (Zweifel et al., 2009) included about 3000 analysed individuals in 131 studies (85 case reports and 46 epidemiological studies). In general, ancient Egyptian mummies were shown to be intentionally mummified, whereas the Pre-Columbian American mummies showed a great diversity of spontaneous mummification. However, ritualistic mummification methods were also practised (n=2). This study's results shall assist to improve evidence-based research in palaeopathology.

Abstract

The aim of this study was to review all Pubmed(®)-listed palaeopathological studies performed on pre-Columbian South American mummies. A total of 61 studies were found (1977-2005). Review criteria included e.g. method of examination, method of mummification, palaeopathological diagnoses and individual age of mummies as well as dating, which ranged from 7500 to 500 years BP, mainly (if reported) originating from the Chiribaya and Chinchorro cultures. The average age of the 99 individually reported mummies was about 25 years. Only six studies included computed tomography, thirteen studies used classical radiography as an examination method. Three studies analysed parasite related diseases, especially caused by Trypanosoma cruzi. Among all of the reported infectious diseases (n=9), there were seven studies presenting cases of tuberculosis. The results were also compared inter-culturally. In 61 studies (37 epidemiological and 24 case reports) more than 6400 mummified individuals were analysed. By contrast, meta-analytic data for ancient Egyptian mummies (Zweifel et al., 2009) included about 3000 analysed individuals in 131 studies (85 case reports and 46 epidemiological studies). In general, ancient Egyptian mummies were shown to be intentionally mummified, whereas the Pre-Columbian American mummies showed a great diversity of spontaneous mummification. However, ritualistic mummification methods were also practised (n=2). This study's results shall assist to improve evidence-based research in palaeopathology.

Statistics

Citations

4 citations in Web of Science®
2 citations in Scopus®
Google Scholar™

Altmetrics

Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > Institute of Evolutionary Medicine
Dewey Decimal Classification:570 Life sciences; biology
610 Medicine & health
Language:English
Date:June 2014
Deposited On:27 Aug 2014 15:01
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 18:21
Publisher:Elsevier
ISSN:0018-442X
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jchb.2014.03.001
PubMed ID:24721560

Download

Full text not available from this repository.
View at publisher