Paleopathology and Non-Specific Indicators of Stress from Point San Jose


Paleopathology encompasses the understanding of disease processes that affect skeletal remains as well as the timeframe and context in which they occur. Although most such studies focus on changes observed at an individual level, the Point San Jose assemblage provides a challenging perspective on paleopathology because it consists of separate skeletal elements lacking association with whole individuals. Consequently, our focus is on the types of bony changes seen rather than specific diagnoses of the etiology of those changes. A total of 240 (12%) bones of approximately 2,000 observable elements show changes in bone shape, bone loss, bone formation, trauma, non-specific infection, or joint disease. Among the elements displaying pathology, the highest prevalence involves bone formation (68%, 163/240) associated primarily with traumatic and degenerative processes. Although bone formation is also associated with shape changes and trauma, joint disease accounts for the majority of bone formation (60%, 97/163). Of the elements that demonstrate trauma, most (83%, 20/24) are appendicular elements. In addition, all periosteal reactions from infection occur on appendicular elements, most commonly associated with fractures.

Cite this Record

Paleopathology and Non-Specific Indicators of Stress from Point San Jose. Kristen Broehl, Colleen Milligan, Kelsie Hart, Karin Wells, Vanessa Reeves. Presented at The 82nd Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Washington, DC. 2018 ( tDAR id: 444398)

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Spatial Coverage

min long: -124.189; min lat: 31.803 ; max long: -105.469; max lat: 43.58 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 21920