Arthritis in Saxon and mediaeval skeletons

Arthritis in Saxon and mediaeval skeletons

By Juliet Rogers, Iain Watt and Paul Dieppe

British Medical Journal, Vol.283 (1981)

Abstract: Examination of 400 Saxon, Romano-British, and mediaeval skeletons from seven archaeological excavations in the west of England showed an unexpectedly high incidence of osteoarthritis and osteophytosis. Three skeletons had evidence of an erosive peripheral arthritis—one with probable gout, one probable psoriatic arthropathy, and one with possible rheumatoid arthritis. The pattern and types of rheumatic disease, and the resultant disability, were apparently different. An exuberant form of large joint osteoarthritis was common and rheumatoid arthritis and similar diseases rare.

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