Famous People with Marfan Syndrome

September 15, 2014 | 0

Collective tissues are essential for the proper functioning of body to hold the body cells, organs and tissues together. Marfan syndrome is an inheritable disorder affecting this connective tissue in human body. Connective tissue is also important for the complete growth and development of the body. The protein called Fibrillin is the major component of this tissue and the failure in its production is the main cause of the Marfan Syndrome.

Most often the heart, blood vessels, bones, eyes and joints get affected in this syndrome. Some consequences such as expansion of the main blood vessel which is responsible for carrying blood from the heart to the rest of the body can be fatal. Also the lungs, nervous system and the skin could most likely get worse. The brain however is the least vulnerable.

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Marfan’s syndrome affects men and women of all races and ethnicities. It is most likely to be genetic i.e. caused due to genetic mutation from parents. In the opposite case, which means when someone gets it for the first time in the family, it’s called spontaneous mutation. A lot of celebrities have been in news for having suffered with this syndrome. Some of them are listed below:

bradford cox marfan syndrome

Bradford Cox

The popular band ‘Deerhunter’ and its off-beat music was associated to the unique physical appearance of its lead singer Bradford Cox. However he has openly discussed his disorders in the media and reported to have been diagnosed when he was a child. As Cox reported about the Marfan’s syndrome “Besides its obvious physical effects, it affects your personality because a lot of your personality affects your self- image”. Interestingly he used his disorder as his strength to add a different factor to the music of his band.

John Tavener marfan syndrome

John Tavener

One of the most famous British classical composers, John Tavener was diagnosed with Marfan’s syndrome after struggling with it for 46 years of his life. Most of the members in his family were suffering from the same disorder, that also included his brother and two of his daughters. He has also spoken about it publicly, facing it with a positive spirit and promoting public awareness. In 1991 he also went through an aortic root development.

Jonathan Larson  marfan syndrome

Jonathon Larson

This famous award winning playwright died in 1996 due to aortic dissection. He was diagnosed at a very later stage and was actually as case of undetected Marfan’s syndrome. Even his regular complaints of chest pain could not get doctors to diagnose the disorder. He was a recipient of the Pulitzer Prize for his rock opera and three tony awards as well. Although he produced good music but he became popular as a music composer only after his death. His cello piece ‘Song for Athene’ was played at Princess Diana’s funeral.

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Flo Hyman Marfan Syndrome

Flo Hyman

Flo Hyman was one of the best known volley ball players in America and also a silver medalist in Olympics. Weakening of her connective tissues was a major revelation of the disorder. She also suffered from surgical emergency like aortic dissection. However her disorder was diagnosed after her death when she passed away during a volley ball match in Japan in 1986.

People with this disorder are unusually tall. Similarly Flo was 6 feet 5 inches tall and in a lifetime of 32 years she contributed with immense passion to the game of volleyball with her commendable abilities.

Osama Bin Laden Marfan Syndrome

Osama Bin Laden

He was one of the most popular people in news for having this syndrome. His long fingers and bony face was a major symptom. He also claimed to have difficulty in walking and spinal problems that come under the most prominent signs of Marfan’s syndrome.

Vincent Schiavelli marfan syndrome

Vincent Schiavelli

Vincent Schiavelli was one of the first celebrities to be diagnosed with this genetic disorder. A famous American actor, he died in 2005 because of this syndrome. He is best known for his role in ‘One flew over the Cuckoo’s nest’. Due to the disorder his lungs got affected leading to contraction. The pain and breathlessness caused due to the contraction lead to his death. He was also an active member of the National Marfan Foundation, an organization that helps people with this disorder.

abraham lincoln marfan syndrome

Abraham Lincoln

The 16th President of the United States, Abraham Lincoln is also the most known for this disorder. Like most other patients of this disorder he too had an elongated and small head. Although there has been no proof but it has been reported that Lincoln’s descendants suffered from the same disease.

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