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Post Axial?[edit]

this term is used several times throughout the article, but never defined. For those of us not in the know, what does it mean? —Preceding unsigned comment added by talk) 08:21, 3 November 2008 (UTC)[reply]

@ (talk) 00:07, 4 February 2024 (UTC)[reply]


I am not a doctor or a geneticist. Please check what I have written carefully! -- Oliver P. 06:35 Mar 6, 2003 (UTC)

Do they work?[edit]

What finger gets double if it is guessable? I suppose they don't get two thumbs. -- Davidme

Me too ... maybe somebody who knows about this could include a bit in the article? (And also mention the genetically bread six-finger piano artist in GATTACA). -- till we *) 17:38, 15 Apr 2004 (UTC)

The last pictures show fingers that are separate and seem to be fully normal. I guess they are functioning well. Does someone know more?

As the originator of the pictures and the article I should be more specific. Many people with polydactyly have only rudimentary skin tags or even digits with some cartilage or bone. These can be removed shortly after birth with no adverse affect on the child. Many children, unless their birth mother tells them, have no idea that they had the condition.
The pictures here, 4 limb polydactyly are different. This child (now 11 in these pictures) had fully functioning digits in the hand and the foot. The hand actually has central re-duplication; the second or third finger is duplicated. The foot shows axial or lateral duplication (the 5th toe).
Repairing the foot would involve removing the 'normal appearing toe' and realigning the twisted one. The hand will probably not be redone. Because this child comes from a culture where having six fingers is considered 'bad luck' and the child might be killed or at worst shunned or cast out of local society. DrGnu 17:55, 7 November 2005 (UTC)[reply]

Are the extra fingers, if functional, as easy to remove in later life as they are after birth? Jackpot Den 12:51, 8 April 2006 (UTC)[reply]

The original question has not been answered. Are there any confirmed real stories of six fingered guitar players, piano players, etc.? I think it's important not to focus only on the negative side of genetic differences but also the possible postives. This is the best way to fight the kind of stigma mentioned above.

When I watched Gattaca, I assumed that the 6-fingered piano artist wasn't genetically bred, but that he was conceived through sex. Apparently the gene coding for six fingers is dominant. If he was an "invalid" or "love-child", it's quite possible that he would have been born with six fingers. I thought it was a nice touch by the director, showing how an unchosen mutation in a naturally born child resulted in a genetic advantage over genetically designed children.

You're right. The pianist is not genetically engineered, but rather a "faith birth." That whole scene was meant to illustrate that Vincent was not the only "in-valid" capable of outperforming his "valid" peers. --Logoskakou 14:00, 7 April 2006 (MST)

Sorry, but I have to say it.. it's 'Genetically BRED' --Mooky 06:45, 15 January 2006 (UTC)[reply]

Ya, it was my understanding from the movie that he was specifically "engineered" to have the functional extra digit. I use quotes because all of the people in to movie are genetically normal human beings, many are merely chosen from hundreds or thousands of embryos conceived by some kind of invetro fertilization based on their genetic desirablity. More than likely the pianist had musician parents, as like it or not musical ability tends to be genetically influenced, that specifically wanted a genetically superior embryo that also had the fully functional extra digit to give him an advantage as a musician. This is highly likely because the fully functional extra digit is extremely rare and combined with musical talent, the two are highly improbably in a "natural" conception. (talk) 06:08, 4 January 2009 (UTC)[reply]

Types of polydactyly[edit]

In the list "Types of polydactyly" could someone "in the know" give a brief description of each? For laypeople (like me) it is incomprehensible. —Frecklefoot 14:53, Apr 15, 2004 (UTC)

Ditto for me! It looks like a catalogue of mysterious terms. David.Monniaux 06:55, 6 May 2005 (UTC)[reply]

They seem really fishy to me. "Polydactyly alopecia seborrheic dermatitis"? "Polydactyly cleft lip palate psychomotor retardation"? These sound bogus. —Keenan Pepper 03:40, 18 November 2005 (UTC)[reply]
I gotta admit, it looks fishy to me to, but these are actually real conditions. My only problem with them is that they are irrelevent, and like Frecklefoot said, they're incomprehensible. What's the point? -Darth Panda 14:08, 25 November 2005
What seems incomprehensible to some is not to others, even outside the medical profession. Moreover these technical terms provide search links for further explorations, both with Google and in books. Please do not dumb down articles just because some fail to understand the terms. It would be far more productive to make stubs or just redtext these terms so knowledge scope can be increased rather than kept at the very lowest common denominator. --15:07, 21 March 2006 (UTC)
Fishy but true (at least in the case of Varadi-Papp syndrome) see Jim Jacobs 03:35, 7 April 2006 (UTC)[reply]

Polydactyly alopecia seborrheic dermatitis = Polydactyly + hair loss + "dandruff" ??????????

Is this for real? Come now..

If there is a link between those conditions, this "syndrome" would seem to be difficult to distinguish from a coincidental pairing of polydactyly and the rather common --> <androgenic\whatever> alopecia + "dandruff".

The net reveals little to no info on this .. All I can find is a repetition of the phrase : "Polydactyly alopecia seborrheic dermatitis" on "rare diseases" listings.

Also, keep in mind "dandruff" is in quotes.. split hairs, tell me seborrheic dermatitis is not dandruff .. :)

-Marilyn Monroe[edit]

The Marilyn Monroe section amounts to "Someone once thought Marilyn Monroe had polydactyly. But she didn't, actually. And now nobody even thinks she does." This is pointless, and especially pointless in this article. If whoever wrote it thinks it's really important, it should go over in Marilyn Monroe, not here. grendel|khan 17:16, 2005 May 6 (UTC)

Polydactyly in The Princess Bride[edit]

I was thinking maybe there should be something added about polydactyly appearing in The Princess Bride, looking for the man with six fingers on one hand? I don't know whether or not people think it would be appropriate in a encyclopedic article, but it is a fairly popular instance.--MacAddct1984 14:29, August 6, 2005 (UTC)

This is kinda similar to the Marilyn Monroe insert. It isn't important to the article, and if people really want to find out about this, they should look up The Princess Bride. -Darth Panda 14:08, 25 November 2005
I think it would be interesting to have a section about "Polydactyly in Popular Culture", or something to that effect. The book of second Samuel in the Bible mentions a six-fingered giant. (This was picked up on by Frank E. Peretti in his children's book "The Tombs of Anak") Mikepurvis 23:08, 25 November 2005 (UTC)[reply]
You might want to go to List of polydactyl people and add those facts. I'm not sure if Samuel is mentioned there. Darth Panda 17:43, 3 December 2005 (UTC)[reply]

The popular culture section seems to have duplicated information. It mentions hannibal and the princess bride twice, separately. I'm merging it. Also, is it really necessary to feature both biblical passages, seeing as they're practically identical? (talk) 04:51, 24 April 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Beat the drum with six fingers[edit]

In the Ural cultures (finno-ugric) extra fingers were the sign of newborn being destined to become a shaman (a kind tribal wizard and visionaire). 07:09, 7 April 2006 (UTC)[reply]

Useful picture for this article[edit]

I saw a picture in another article on wikipedia some time ago of a family (I think in pakastan) that all have 6 (of the functional type) fingers and have attached some sort of prestiege to it. The picture was very old but it had a small paragraph about them in the article. Does anyone know what this is? I will look for the article I think I edited it (doing disambiguation link repair) so I am going to look though my edit history. Dalf | Talk 19:53, 11 July 2006 (UTC) they are ugly[reply]


"In the cult movie Gattaca, an embellishment of one of Schubert's Impromptus becomes a piece only playable with twelve fingers."

Is calling the movie Gattaca a "cult movie" really NPOV? The article on "Gattaca" does not contain any reference to it being a "cult movie".-Royalguard11Talk 03:06, 18 July 2006 (UTC)[reply]
The article on cult films contains a reference to Gattaca. Google picks out rather a lot of like references. Brilliant film, possibly there is a transatlantic difference in emphasis on the meaning of "cult film"? Google:
Cult film - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Cult films often become the source of a thriving, obsessive, ... Night of the Living Dead, Pink Flamingos, Female Trouble, The Hills Have Eyes, Gattaca, ... - 41k - Cached - Similar pages

Coriolise 15:11, 16 March 2007 (UTC)[reply]

Doctors who operate on Polydactyl patients[edit]

Where in the world can you find doctors who actually know what to do for people who have this disorder? Are there so few of them that they are hard to find? Scorpio 1950 16:50, 3 August 2006 (UTC)Scorpio 1950[reply]

I have no idea. My friend Tara had Polydactyl. She was born with 6 toes on one foot. (Nearly everybody in her family was born with Polydactyl, but she was the only one who had bones and could actually use her extra... parts. It was removed shortly after birth.). I assume since Polydactyl is dominant that many people have it, there most be /some/ doctors knew what to do. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:04, 8 March 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Since it is a congenital hand difference, the extra toe or finger is operated by a congenital hand surgeon most of the times. Especially in difficult cases it is important to look for a hand surgeon with its expertise in congenital hands. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 15:49, 11 July 2010 (UTC)[reply]

A report in my local paper suggests that for extra fingers containing no bone, a procedure known as "tying off" has been employed when the baby has just been born [1]. Presumably this is similar to the principle used by farmers to remove tails and/or testicles from young animals. The article would be improved by the addition of information on surgical measures and any ethical differences of opinion surrounding them. Rugxulo (talk) 22:57, 16 December 2010 (UTC)[reply]

About "Extra digits in popular culture"[edit]

All of the entries in that list seem to be about people, so it seems redundant since there is an existing list of polydactyly people. Should that section be merged with the existing list and just provide a link? -Mizi 22:10, 9 November 2006 (UTC)[reply]


See the bossip web page... LILVOKA 02:30, 17 May 2007 (UTC) oprah is a fat ass —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:57, 17 November 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Miss Brazil[edit]

Natália Guimarães, Miss Brazil 2007 and Miss Universe 1rst Runner Up, was born polydactyl. Her father also had the condition and she says her eventual children would be candidates of being polydactyl, but she thinks that's no real problem. In portuguese:,,MUL82462-8334,00-NATALIA+GUIMARAES+FALA+SOBRE+POLIDACTILIA+QUE+A+FEZ+NASCER+COM+SEIS+DEDOS+N.html Aldo L 23:07, 3 August 2007 (UTC)[reply]

Giving the middle finger[edit]

When someone with polydactyly on non-thumb fingers, which finger would he or she use to give the bird to someone, typically? Oh yeah, and there's fingerspelling and ASL, both of which assume five-fingered hands. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Rickyrab (talkcontribs) 03:12, 7 September 2007 (UTC)[reply]

I'd would say by using the longest finger. My other questions are having to custom order 6 finger gloves and how awkward are handshakes? Night Tracks (talk) 02:20, 25 December 2009 (UTC)[reply]

I have 12 toes[edit]

and it makes buying shoes a pain!

Sunnycal 02:54, 25 September 2007 (UTC)[reply]

00:45, 10 January 2008 (UTC)

Categories, people![edit]

How is it that this article has been up since 2003 and it is still not categorized? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:40, 26 May 2008 (UTC)[reply]


The Bible passages mentioned do not refer to Goliath. It seems to refer to another giant from Gath, probably one of Goliath's brothers. So, I'm fixing this. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:30, 25 July 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Mythical References[edit]

The references in the section on fictional and mythological polydactyls seem to be there; they simply are not written out in the standard bibliographical format. The 24-digit giant has Book, Chapter, and Verse references for the Bible, although the translation is not specified, nor is "The Bible" mentioned for those who do not recognize II Kings and II Cronicles. The Author of Redwall is identified, but not the publisher or copyright date. Hanibal could be better identified. Nevertheless, the statement that there are no references seems unjustified. (Replace it and tell me otherwise if you dissagree...) —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:21, 9 October 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Who believes in a Bible that doesn't have those books in it? I've never heard of such an idea existing today; do you mean that we should accomodate followers of Marcion? Nyttend (talk) 02:54, 16 April 2009 (UTC)[reply]

Mismatch between title and content[edit]

From reading this article, it is clearly limited to Polydactyly in humans. However, polydactyly occurs in other animals as well. Only two options present themselves to us: do we add information on non-human animals with polydactyly, or do we rename this article "Polydactyly in Humans" and make a seperate article for the definition of the overall concept? I would vote for a single combined article on all forms of polydactyly.

As an example: Cats typically have five digits on each front paw, and four on each hind. I have personally known cats with up to seven functional digits on their front paws, and up to five on their hind paws. -Kasreyn (talk) 15:17, 27 April 2009 (UTC)[reply]

An adventurer? Possibly David Attenborough?[edit]

I remember,when I was young, watching a TV show with my parents; some adventurer would travel to exotic locales, and show the films. The films were silent; the adventurer would comment in voice-over as we watched.

One time, he visited a people who practiced fire-walking. He tried it himself, with less than good results. I remember that in the course of it, it came out incidentally that he had six toes--at least on one foot.

Does anybody (cough) older than me remember this? Now I find that in 1960--about the right time--David Attenborough did some shows like this, including an episode about fire-walkers in Fiji.

It was almost comical, in a way. The adventurer tried walking across the coals, and took about a step and a half before dancing and leaping off. He sat down, and one local examined his foot. The film showed the foot up close, and the adventurer remarked in voice-over that we will notice he has six toes. We saw the local man look puzzled. He then, with a finger, counted the adventurers toes, paused a moment, then with the same finger counted the fingers on his own hand. Then he shrugged, and that was the end of it.

Anybody else remember? David Attenborough? (talk) 12:43, 15 September 2009 (UTC)Stephen Kosciesza[reply]

Anne Boleyn[edit]

Very few of the people listed as being Polydactyly have references listed. In particular, Anny Boleyn. The page on here seems to indicate that it was a rumor started by radical Catholics after her death.-- (talk) 08:51, 9 January 2011 (UTC)[reply]

I agree, the page on Anne reports that she was not Polydactyl, rumors of which were spread after her death. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:35, 10 January 2011 (UTC)[reply]

12 fingers, 14 toes[edit] — Preceding unsigned comment added by Bigshotnews (talkcontribs) 12:24, 16 February 2011 (UTC)[reply]

I watched the video and paused it at times to count 24 digits. She has seven toes on one foot and 6 on the other, and six fingers on each hand. That is not a world record - but it is interesting. (talk) 04:45, 29 January 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Varalakshmi V[edit]

"Varalakshmi V, a girl born with a rare case of polydactyly with 27 fingers and toes. She is from Bangalore and has eight fingers in each hand and about four to five extra toes in each foot."

This doesn't add up, eight fingers on each hand is 16, four to five extra toes on each foot (can't they just count them?) is a minimum of 18, that makes 34 fingers and toes. Muleattack (talk) 02:50, 19 June 2011 (UTC)[reply]

agreed..... i was reading this and thinking that it just made no sense. Should it be removed or checked with reference? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 10:48, 20 October 2011 (UTC)[reply]

Hampton Hawes[edit]

"Hampton Hawes, jazz pianist, was born with six fingers on each hand (surgically removed shortly after birth).[11]" I am new to the editing and contribution side of Wikipedia so am reluctant to edit the main article, but the above entry rather implies that poor Hampton either had all six fingers, or maybe even "each hand" surgically removed rather than just the supernumerary digits. Should we make a change? Chris (talk) 19:42, 9 January 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Evolutionary consequences[edit]

The section "Evolutionary consequences" is opinion and has no references. I believe it should be removed. The just of the section is to say that Polydactyly some-how invalidates evolutionary theory. There is no rule to evolution that prevents Polydactyly nor does it "need" to be explained by evolution. Indeed that fact that Polydactyly can be hereditary gives credence to changes in population over time (which is exactly what evolution is). This can be further supported by examples outside of humans such as the Norwegian Lundehund which has 6 toes across the entire breed, and gives it an evolutionary advantage (better hunting of the Puffin). — Preceding unsigned comment added by Chronofish (talkcontribs) 12:41, 30 March 2014 (UTC)[reply]

External links modified[edit]

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Use of "Mongoloid" and other antiquated "Great Race" terms[edit]

Maybe the portion on what populations are likely to have different forms of polydactyly was copied from a 1906 Encyclopedia Britannica or a similar source, but I don't think that's any excuse for it to use terms that Wikipedia itself describes as problematic and outdated. Could we get an update with some more current terminology? (talk) 15:34, 19 July 2018 (UTC)[reply]

That appears to have been vandalism that was missed at the time (2016) that it was made. I have reverted back to the previous wording, which still isn't great (it uses the term "blacks"). I'm concerned though about the source; the link that should take us to the source instead takes us to an alphabetical index that does not mention Polydactyly. ~ ONUnicorn(Talk|Contribs)problem solving 22:45, 10 February 2021 (UTC)[reply]


I've just removed:

  1. ^ "Arterton's Extra Digits". IMDb. 7 October 2008. Retrieved 9 February 2010.
  2. ^ "Personality Parade - David Letterman". Parade. Advance Publications. 10 November 2009.

IMDB is expressly identified as an unreliable source. The other appears within a list of gossipy items in Parade magazine. An encyclopedia should be based on better sources than either of these. -- Hoary (talk) 00:12, 20 September 2018 (UTC)[reply]

Global frequency[edit]

It would be nice if the article could show the global frequency (of polydactyly), as a table. Does not have to be a long sub-article, just so that we can see where this is most frequently found, and how often it occurs. Right now this partially exists in regards to the part "epidemiology" of polydactyly, but this refers mostly to africa, not to the global situation in regards to this disease/condition. 2A02:8388:1641:8380:3AD5:47FF:FE18:CC7F (talk) 02:03, 27 February 2020 (UTC)[reply]

An unusual example[edit]

I worked with an Indian man (ie, from India) who had a Y-shaped thumb. Both phalanges were duplicated. It was totally functional. Both thumbs moved together; he could not move each separately. From what is stated here, that would seem to be very very rare. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 2001:8003:E414:3A01:FC23:1544:ADCE:9E2A (talk) 09:08, 2 October 2020 (UTC)[reply]