X-rays on Peruvian mummy in Pennsylvania reveal ‘fascinating’ 2,000-year-old secrets

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Researchers at a Pennsylvania museum are hoping to deliver “life” to a greater than 2,000-year-old Peruvian mummy that has been locked away in storage for years.

In an effort to uncover hidden secrets and techniques in regards to the mummy, which was donated to the Everhart Museum in Scranton roughly a century in the past, museum officers determined to show to trendy know-how. They traveled throughout the road to Geisinger Group Medical Heart, the place medical doctors carried out exams — together with X-rays — on the unidentified human.

“Little or no is understood in regards to the mummy, though it has been recognized as belonging to the Paracas tradition one of many oldest cultures of South America courting again to 800 – 100 B.C.,” the Everhart Museum advised Fox Information in an announcement Wednesday. “The mother was final on view within the 1990s.”

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Native dentist Dr. G.E. Hill bestowed the specimen, which he had beforehand obtained from his father who briefly lived in Peru, to the museum so they might analysis it additional. A long time later, Everhart is planning to place the traditional determine on show — however first, they’d like to have the ability to educate the general public in regards to the mummy’s mysterious previous.

“GCMC provided to make use of its know-how to assist reply a few of these unknowns. As a result of the delicate mummy is within the fetal place and enclosed in a sealed glass case, Geisinger specialists couldn’t use CT scan know-how. Nevertheless, the X-ray technique labored,” the museum defined.

Dr. Sauerwine Scott examines X-rays of the Peruvian mummy.

Dr. Sauerwine Scott examines X-rays of the Peruvian mummy.
(Courtesy Everhart Museum)

Geisinger Radiology Medical Director Dr. Scott Sauerwine admitted it was the “first mummy” he’d ever encountered. However he was as much as the problem.

“I believe we made some attention-grabbing observations and contributed to answering a few of the museum’s questions,” he stated in an announcement offered to Fox Information.

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“Mummies have lengthy been fascinating.”

— Aurore Giguet

To date, they have been in a position to uncover the mum’s top, age and potential well being points.

In keeping with the Everhart Museum, the mum is probably going a male teenager and stands at 5 ft tall — common top for a Peruvian throughout that period. He’s coated in a number of layers of cloth, with a adorned textile wrapped round his knee.

“He didn’t have any damaged bones, however irregular calcifications within the backbone point out a metabolic dysfunction,” the researchers noticed in a synopsis of their findings. “His toes are lacking, which may have resulted from extreme dealing with of the physique put up mummification. Alternatively, they might have been amputated as a consequence of an infection or frostbite.”

Whereas there’s a lot extra to discover in regards to the mummy, researchers agreed this was a profitable begin.

“Mummies have lengthy been fascinating,” Aurore Giguet, government director of the Everhart Museum, stated in an announcement. “Peruvian mummification traditions began seven thousand years in the past, that’s a lot sooner than in Egypt, and lasted till the Spanish conquest 500 years in the past.”

The mother can be featured on the Everhart Museum for a short time — from now till April 7 — as a part of its “Preserved: Traditions of the Andes” exhibit.

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