The Medical Lives of History`s Famous People

The Rapunzel Syndrome

Author(s): William James Maloney

Pp: 148-151 (4)

DOI: 10.2174/9781608059362114010028

* (Excluding Mailing and Handling)


The Rapunzel syndrome is known in medical terminology as trichobezoar. It is a very rare disorder in which hair is swallowed by an individual. The hair is indigestable and becomes entrapped within the stomach resulting in a hair ball. After years of this condition the hairs start to extend beyond the stomach into the small bowel. This is known as the Rapunzel syndrome. It is primarily found in children who are emotionally disturbed. The syndrome takes its name from a Brothers Grimmʼs fairy tale character, Rapunzel. The fictional Rapunzel is known for her long, flowing, beautiful hair.

Keywords: Brothers Grimm, fairy tale, folktales, Hanau, laproscopy, Rapunzel syndrome, small bowel, stomach, trichobezoar, trichophagia, trichotillomania.

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