The 81st Annual Meeting of the American Association of Physical Anthropologists (2012)


Frequencies of periostitis and enamel hypoplasias in a Colonial Maya population

MEGAN C. MURPHY and ROBERT R. PAINE.

Department of Sociology, Anthropology, and Social Work, Texas Tech University

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The frequencies of enamel hypoplasias and periostitis exhibited by the early Colonial Maya burials recovered from Tipu, Belize were examined. The population studied is housed at SUNY Plattsburgh in New York and is a subset of the Tipu Collection. To our knowledge, the correlation between enamel hypoplasias and periostitis and their relationships to the overall health of individuals from this population is yet to be studied. This sample of 95 skeletons consists of individuals complete with established demographic data. Of this sample, 69 of the individuals are male and 26 are female. We evaluated the frequencies of enamel hypoplasias and periostitis in males and females and found that both sexes have comparable rates of periostitis as well as comparable rates of enamel hypoplasias, although females had a slightly higher percentage. However, a greater percentage of females than males displayed both periostitis and enamel hypoplasias together. Overall, we found that enamel hypoplasias occurred in conjunction with periostitis more often than without. Of the 95 skeletons studied, a higher percentage displayed both enamel hypoplasias and periostitis, while fewer displayed enamel hypoplasias alone. However, periostitis, occurred more often without the presence of enamel hypoplasias at. The implications of these findings will be discussed in this paper as they relate to the overall health of the sample.

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