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Rev Med Inst Mex Seguro Soc. 2019 Jul 31;57(2):113-117.

Clinical diagnosis through paintworks observation

[Article in Spanish; Abstract available in Spanish from the publisher]

Author information

Instituto Tecnológico y de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey, Escuela de Medicina y Ciencias de la Salud, Departamento de Ciencias Clínicas. Guadalajara, Jalisco, México


in English, Spanish

Despite of the important technological advances which today allow a precise diagnosis through genetic or imaging studies, one of the fundamental pillars of medical diagnosis is, and always will be, patient examination. The visual identification of the signs that distinguish a disease is still important to make a clinical diagnosis. These very same examination skills and the knowledge on the disorders’ appearance, as well as the technical abilities of the artists that once painted pictures, allow us to diagnose a rosacea among Rembrandt’s self-portraits, or Marfan’s syndrome amidst Egon Schiele’s elongated figures. It is possible to find diseases represented in paintworks from long before someone ever described them in a book, longer even before someone considered them illnesses.


Medicine in the Arts; Marfan Syndrome; Rosacea; Tetralogy of Fallot; Breast Neoplasms


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