- A dictionary of medical eponyms

Mona Lisa syndrome

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Facial muscle contracture that develops after Bell’s palsy when the facial nerves has undergone partial wallerian degeneration and has regenerated.

Description

Facial muscle contracture that develops after Bell’s palsy when the facial nerves has undergone partial wallerian degeneration and has regenerated, manifested by a Mona Lisa-like smile. The accompanying synkinesis would explain many of the known facts surrounding the painting and is a classic example of Leonardo da Vinci as the compulsive anatomist who combined art and science.

See also Bells paralysis, a palsy of facial muscles, under Sir Charles Bell, Scottish anatomist, surgeon, and physiologist, 1774-1842.

Bibliography

  • K. K. Adour:
    Mona Lisa syndrome: solving the enigma of the Gioconda smile.
    Annals of Otology, Rhinology, and Laryngology, March 1989, 89 (3): 196-199.

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