What is Abraham Lincoln’s connection to Marfan syndrome?

  • Nikolaos G. Markeas
  • Dimitrios Begkas
Keywords: Abraham Lincoln, Marfan syndrome, American civil war.


Abraham Lincoln, a tall and thin young lawyer from Kentucky, who decided in the middle of the 19th century to enter politics, had all the necessary qualifications. His name has become synonymous with the unwavering honesty of a truthful fighter who is unconcerned in the face of adversity. From the first moment he assumed the presidency of the United States, he set as his life’s goal the realization of a youthful vision, the abolition of slavery. When diplomatic contacts and attempts at compromise failed, he was forced to resort to the dynamic solution. The American Civil War was the inevitable product of intransigence, but it resulted in mutual agreements bringing order, freedom and democracy to the United States. Lincoln’s life was full of difficulties, unexpected obstacles, childhood losses, teenage frustrations, chronic illnesses, and periods of depression, triumphs, victories, but also defeats in politics and on the battlefields. Medicine played an important role in the health problems of the 16th American president, especially those that probably hindered his course and determined his decisions in critical periods. The possibility that he suffered from Marfan syndrome has been the subject of research, in order to justify Lincoln’s body type and his special facial features.


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Author Biographies

Nikolaos G. Markeas

Children’s Euroclinic of Athens

Dimitrios Begkas

Sixth Department of Orthopaedics, General Hospital “Asklepieion” Voula, Athens


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