The Elephant man was more than a freak...he was a human being who had a name, and his name was Joseph Carey Merrick. Here is a little bit about him:Joseph Merrick was born on August 5, 1862 in Leicester to Mary Jane and Joseph Rockley Merrick. He had a younger brother and sister and was completely normal until the age of three.In an autobiographical note which appeared on the reverse side of his freak show pamphlet,
It was later discovered that Merrick's disorder was caused by what we today call Neurofibromatosis; Merrick's was NF1.
·NF has been classified into three distinct types; NF1, NF2 and schwannomatosis. They are caused by different genes, located on different chromosomes.
·NF1 is the most common neurological disorder caused by a single gene; occurring in one in every 3,000 children born.
·NF2 is a rarer type, occurring in 1:25,000 people worldwide.
·While today there is no consensus, studies indicate that schwannomatosis occurs in 1:40,000 people.
·The Neurofibromatoses are genetically-determined disorders which affect more than 2 million people worldwide; this makes NF more prevalent than cystic fibrosis.
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