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Vol. 21 - Num. 83

Special Articles

Rare diseases and Pediatrics: a brilliant friendship made through movies

Javier González de Diosa, Eva Bermejo Sánchezb, Alfredo García Alixc

aServicio de Pediatría. Hospital General Universitario de Alicante. Departamento de Pediatría. Universidad Miguel Hernández. ISABIAL-Instituto de Investigación Sanitaria y Biomédica de Alicante. Alicante. España.
bInstituto de Investigación de Enfermedades Raras (IIER). Estudio Colaborativo Español de Malformaciones Congénitas (ECEMC). Centro de Investigación sobre Anomalías Congénitas (CIAC). Instituto de Salud Carlos III. Madrid. España.
cInstituto de Recerca Sant Joan de Déu. Servicio de Genética. Hospital Sant Joan de Déu. Barcelona. España.

Correspondence: J González. E-mail:

Reference of this article: González de Dios J, Bermejo Sánchez E, García Alix A. Rare diseases and Pediatrics: a brilliant friendship made through movies. Rev Pediatr Aten Primaria. 2019;21:e151-e171.

Published in Internet: 16-09-2019 - Visits: 19966


Rare diseases (RD) are very frequent, in fact, the sum of all people with RD represents between 6 and 8% of the population, hence the importance as a problem of health and social interest. One of the main challenges in the field of RD is that these entities become visible, therefore media is playing a relevant role in order to achieve such a challenge, and cinema is one of the essentials.

Cine y Pediatría project aims to improve the humanization of our clinical practice through the prescription of films. In this article we concrete this objective specifically to the prescription of films in RD, to know and recognize our heros and their different diseases of low prevalence.

We propose ten main plot films about RD, essential to live the emotions and reflections that their heros and families give us back: Freaks (Tod Browning, 1932), Lorenzo’s oil (George Miller, 1992), Mask (Peter Bogdanovich, 1984), Simon Birch (Mark Steven Johnson, 1998), Gabrielle (Louise Archambault, 2013), Front of the class (Peter Werner, 2008), Extraordinary measures (Tom Vaugham, 2010), Cromosoma 5 (María Ripoll, 2013), Línea de meta (Paola García Costas, 2014) and Wonder (Stephen Chbosky, 2017).

But we also suggest another ten relevant films about it: The Miracle Worker (Arthur Penn, 1962), Even Dwarfs stated small (Wernez Herzog, 1970), The elephant man (David Lynch, 1980), Unbreakable (M. Night Shyamalan, 2000), The others (Alejandro Amenábar, 2001), Frágiles (Jaume Balagueró, 2005), XXY (Lucía Puenzo, 2007), The curious case of Benjamin Button (David Fincher, 2008), Insensibles (Juan Carlos Medina, 2012) and Miracles from heaven (Patricia Riggen, 2016).

The narrative observation of these main plot films (and also of the relevant ones) will allow us to approach this exciting world of RD, but above all the extraordinary people and families behind the cold name of each medical entity. And this is why the rare becomes extraordinary in the seventh art.



Cinema Education Paediatrics Rare Diseases



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