To the Editor: Although I enjoyed the paper by Dr. Kurt Aterman entitled "Why Did Hephaestus Limp?", I believe that some recent reports in the field of skeletal dysplasias may permit extension of his conjectures concerning the nature of Hephaestus' deformity. I should like to offer alternative "diagnoses" to achondroplasia (or chondrodystrophy) which unfortunately has been applied to various types of micromelic dwarfs, often with no consideration of important atypical features.
First, if we accept the concept of micromelic dwarfism with club foot deformity (as illustrated in Fig 1 and 2), which would result in a truly abnormal gait in contradistinction to the rolling but unhesitating gait of achondroplastic dwarfs, we could postulate that Hephaestus suffered from diastrophic dwarfism (Lamy, M., and Maroteaux, P.: Le nanisme diastrophique, Presse Med 68:1977, 1960; Taybi, H.: Diastrophic Dwarfism, Radiology 80:1, 1963).
Secondly, if we equate Hephaestus with Ptah and Bes, we must bring