Anthropometry for syndromology

Indian J Pediatr. 1991 Mar-Apr;58(2):253-8. doi: 10.1007/BF02751131.


In diagnosing certain syndromes, abnormal facial features such as hypertelorism, low set ears or wide nasolabial distance are taken into consideration. Most often the description is from a visual impression, which may prove wrong as it is only relative. Detailed studies have, so far been only from the west, except for two, from northern India. These values may not suit us as facial features and measurements vary in different populations. This study was undertaken to set up a standard for the south Indian population, to detect deviations and to compare our figures with those from other studies. Measurements were taken in 850 children, from birth to 11 years of age (horizontal study). The parameters studied were the inner and outer canthal distances, from which interpupillary distance was calculated; nasolabial distance, ear length, ear set, hand length and AF/AT ratio. The average measurements for various features (50th percentile) 3rd and 97th centile are presented in tables. Besides providing standards, this paper will aquaint the pediatricians on the need to actually measure the features rather than rely on ones impression on physical features in diagnosing syndromes.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Cephalometry*
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Ear, External / pathology
  • Eye / pathology
  • Face / abnormalities*
  • Female
  • Hand / pathology
  • Humans
  • India
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Lip / pathology
  • Male
  • Nose / pathology
  • Syndrome