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The oldest known case of heart disease

A CT scan has identified the earliest known case of heart disease in a 3,550-year old Egyptian princess.

Thomas and his colleagues reported 18 months ago on a study of 16 mummies, in which they found hardening of the arteries in nine. Eight of those nine were older than 45 when they died. The oldest of the atherosclerotic mummies belonged to a woman known as Lady Rai, who had been a nursemaid to Queen Ahmose Nefertiti. She died at the age of 30 to 40 around 1530 BC, 200 years before the time of King Tut.

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Story: Thomas H. Maugh II | Photo: Dr. Michael Miyamoto

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