Just a "zebra" trying my best to live life to the fullest with EDS and POTS...and loving the ride.

POTS in Art?

Written by Katie. Posted in POTS Appointments, POTS Awareness

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"The Doctor and his Patient" by Jan Steen

I found it!  Ever since I saw Dr. Grubb last April, I have been searching for this painting.  Dr. Grubb had showed me this painting to illustrate how he believes this patient could be a patient with EDS type 3 and POTS.  This painting is from the Dutch realism period, and was painted by Jan Steen in the 1600’s.  The Dutch Realism period was a period when artists began to paint real life…even sick people. 

When Dr. Grubb showed me this painting, he asked me to tell him what I noticed about the patient and the doctor.  I told him that first of all, she looks sickly and tired.  I also noticed that the one hand that is in her lap looks purple, like her blood has pooled into the hand that is pointed down to the floor.  However, the hand that the doctor is using to take her pulse does not appear to look bluish/purple.  It appears that her body does not know how to regulate her circulation when gravity comes into play.  (POTS!)  Also, as I said, the doctor is taking her pulse.  Interesting.  It makes me wonder if her heart rate is much higher when she stands than when she is laying down?  She reminds me of me when I have POTS spells, except my blood usually pools in my legs, and not my hands.

Dr. Grubb also pointed out how faint and loose her body appears, appearing to illustrate joint hypermobility (EDS, type 3).  He explained that he shows this painting to make the point that Dysautonomia/POTS have really been around for hundreds of years; only now it has a name, and is finally being researched.

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