This blog post isn’t a diagnosis. I’m not a clinician, although as a researcher I do study the molecular basis of congenital malformations. And this isn’t meant to be a statement on politics or political ideology. What this is is simply a series of observations that may help to provide a fuller picture of Donald J. Trump’s behaviors as presented by the popular press and those who have known him. Since many people have questioned his mental health, the presence of congenital malformations may add further background and understanding of Trump’s behaviors to date.
The presence of multiple congenital malformations, whether obvious to the layman or visible primarily to the clinician, are frequently accompanied by developmental disorders. While most people with developmental conditions don’t have multiple congenital malformations, the brains of those who do are often affected to some degree– though effects may not be readily visible on MRI. Multiple congenital malformations are often comorbid with intellectual disability, but they may also co-occur with developmental delay, behavioral conditions like ADHD, or learning disabilities.
While some congenital malformations can be diagnosed through pictures, others require careful measurement of the individual him- or herself for confirmation. Therefore, this blog is simply meant to suggest that Trump’s childhood pictures are dysmorphic. For the purposes of diagnosis. Mr. Trump would need to be seen by a trained dysmorphologist.
Above is a childhood picture of Donald Trump. I’m uncertain as to his exact age at the time of this picture; it appears as though he’s about three years old. Many congenital malformations are most apparent during this period, as some malformations are in fact delays in development that may right themselves over time or become considerably less obvious. For these reasons, I’ll be using the image above for my analysis.
First off, the overall shape of the face is triangular. While it looks like this may be exaggerated by a small lower jaw, it’s impossible to tell whether the forehead is unusually prominent and/or the volume of the skull oversized (macrocephaly).
The most obvious malformation of the face is the reduced width of the mouth, known as microstomia. On average, the width of the mouth should extend to below the pupils of the eye. The lips on the other hand are unusually thick.
As for the nose, the tip has an unusual square-like appearance and a broad nasal bridge. Meanwhile, the nostrils (alae nasi) appear to be very mildly hypoplastic, in that they should normally extend laterally inferior to the inner corner of the eye (palpebral fissure).
The eyes exhibit upslanting palpebral fissures (corners of the eyes), whose plain would normally be level. The palpebral fissures may also be mildly shortened, although that would require precise measurements in relation to other facial features. The eyebrows are modestly arched.
A mold of Trump’s hand as an adult, aside from being unusually short (potentially brachydactylic), seems to indicate he may have a mild form of clinodactyly, which means a finger is bent or curved. Most often the pinky is affected.
In summary, Donald Trump’s childhood image suggests that he had multiple craniofacial malformations affecting each of the midline structures of the face (eyes, nose, mouth), as well as the overall shape of the face and head. In addition, the mold of his hand suggest that the hands were similarly affected.
Together, these features, along with his behavioral history, suggest a syndromic condition, possibly of genetic origin. Were his family to ask my professional opinion, I would recommend genetic testing, psychological assessment, and behavioral intervention for whomever in the family is likewise affected.