In 2004 a team of 11 specialists headed by Dr. Ted J. Robinson investigated the Starchild Skull in an attempt to identify a deformity, illness, or other natural explanation for the skull. They examined the skull, maxilla fragment, X-Rays, CT scans, performed a 3-dimensional scan, and extensively discussed and researched the skull's physical characteristics.
The study concluded that the Starchild Skull was unlike any specimen in recorded medical history, and notably that its unusual characteristics are not the result of artificial cranial deformation. The Starchild Skull is not the result of artificial shaping.
Preliminary Analysis Of A Highly Unusual Human-Like Skull
Dr. Ted J. Robinson, M.D., L.M.C.C., F.R.C.S (c), 2004
1. The skull in question has a provenance that is not verified at present. That situation may change in time, but for now all that can be said with certainty is that the skull is real, it is comprised of calcium hydroxyapatite (the essence of all mammalian bone), its parts are configured "naturally" (not cobbled together or in any other way hoaxed), and it presents numerous physical anomalies that do not conform to standard skull norms.
2. The skull remained in my possession in Vancouver, B.C., for the better part of one year. I was given complete discretion to study it in any way I saw fit. My analysis derives from extensive examination of the skull itself, combined with analysis of X-rays and CAT scans. I have shared these data with colleagues who have given opinions that will be mentioned in this document as their input becomes relevant.
3. In general, the skull has the basic components of a human skull: i.e., a frontal bone, two sphenoids, two temporals, two parietals, and an occipital. However, these bones have been markedly reconfigured from the "normal" shapes and positions such bones usually have. In addition, the bone itself has been reconstituted to an equally marked degree, being somewhat less than half as thick as normal human bone, with a corresponding weight of roughly half normal. The reconfigurations and the reconstitution are uniform throughout all axes and in all planes of the skull. There is no asymmetrical warping or irregular thinning that is the hallmark of typical human deformity.
4. The morphology of this skull is so highly unusual as to be unique in my forty years of experience as a medical doctor specializing in plastic and reconstructive surgery of the cranium. Because of its uniqueness, I undertook an extensive review of current literature on craniofacial abnormalities, which failed to uncover a single similar example. In short, it seems to be not only unique in my personal experience, but also unique throughout the past history of worldwide study of craniofacial abnormalities. This is significant.
5. Specialists who examined the skull and associated X-rays and CAT scans were:
Dr. Fred Smith, Head of Pediatrics, Children’s Hospital, New Orleans, La.
Dr. David Hodges, Radiologist, Royal Columbian Hospital, New Westminster, B.C.
Dr. John Bachynsky, Radiologist, New Westminster, B.C.
Dr. Ken Poskitt, Pediatric Neuroradiologist, Vancouver Children’s Hospital
Dr. Ian Jackson, (formerly of Mayo Clinic), Craniofacial Plastic Surgeon, Michigan
Dr. John McNicoll, Craniofacial Plastic Surgeon, Seattle
Dr. Mike Kaburda, Oral Surgeon, New Westminster, B.C.
Dr. Tony Townsend, Ophthalmologist, Vancouver
Dr. Hugh Parsons, Ophthalmologist, Vancouver
Dr David Sweet, Forensic Odontologist, Vancouver
6. Dr David Hodges, a radiologist, stated that the suture lines were open and growing at the time of death. Dr. David Sweet, an internationally renowned forensic pathologist at the University of British Columbia, was of the opinion that the skull was that of a 5-6 year old, based upon the dentition in the right maxillary fragment.
7. Though some specialists who looked at the skull disagreed, I have always supported Dr Sweet in his belief that this was the skull of a 5-6 year old child.
8. Dr. Bachynsky noted that there is no evidence of erosion of the inner table of the skull. Such erosion would be consistent with a diagnosis of hydrocephaly, so this condition can safely be ruled out as a cause of the abnormalities expressed. Hydrocephaly also causes a widening of the sutures, again not expressed here. There was consensus agreement to both of these observations by other experts conversant with these features.
9. Dr. Kaburda carried out three-dimensional scans which measure certain fixed points in any skull, allowing for comparison of any particular skull to the established norm. These accumulated results were compared to a statistical analysis of 100 human skulls. This skull was found to be more than ten (10) standard deviations outside the norm, i.e. the statistical center of a Bell curve. This is another strong indication that the skull in question is unlike anything previously seen or investigated.
10. Doctors Townsend and Parsons examined the orbital cavities and concluded that the being may well have been sighted, but if so, its visual structures deviated strongly from the norm. The cavities, while astonishingly symmetrical, were less than 50% normal depth. The optic foramen, which carries the optic nerve from the brain through the orbital bone to the eye, is nearly an inch lower than it would be in a normal human skull. However, attachment points for the muscles that control an eyeball's movements were still to be felt on the inner surface of the orbit, indicating that a ball rather than some other mechanism was its most likely expression.
11. If indeed these sockets held eyeballs, those of normal size would have greatly protruded from the face, creating a serious liability of damage during routine activity. Because the eyeballs occupy a position lower in the face than is normal, and they rest in a socket markedly reduced in rectilinear shape and depth, they would have been significantly reduced in size. In either case, however, large eyeballs or small, they would require upper lids three or four times more extensive than normal upper lids to be lubricated in the manner necessary for human eyeballs to function properly.
12. Doctors Hodges and Poskitt found the brain inside the skull was abnormally large. This was determined by lining the intracranial cavity with a plastic bag that was then filled with Niger birdseed. This gave a size of 1600 cubic centimetres, which is 200 c.c. larger than the typical adult size of 1400 c.c. This is even more unusual because the size of the skull compares most favourably with a small adult or a child of about 12 years old. This extra brain capacity is apparently due to the deep shallowing of the eye sockets, a total lack of frontal sinuses (not even vestigial bumps are discernable), and significant bossing (expansion) of the upper rear of both parietals.
13. In any case, they observed, the extreme slant of the rear parietals and the occipital bone challenges whether this skull could have contained typical brain matter, and casts further doubt that its cerebellum was typical. In a normal skull, the cerebellum rests at the base of the cerebrum, supported by the internal occipital protuberance and the twin flares of the sagittal sulcus and the transverse sulcus. With this support mechanism, over the course of a lifetime the cerebrum’s weight does not press down onto the cerebellum and distend it such that it will cease to function properly. In this unique skull, however, the entire weight of the brain slants directly down on the area that should hold its cerebellum. Instead of the rounded area typically present for support, there is a wedge-shaped area of perhaps one-quarter of normal. Furthermore, the internal protuberance and sulcus ridges are significantly reduced. What effect would the weight of a notably amplified brain have on an unsupported cerebellum carried into adulthood? It presents a genuine conundrum.
14. Personally, I was most concerned with determining how the rear of the skull could have become so flattened, from the atypical fossa (depression) in the sagittal suture between the parietals, down to the foramen magnum opening. This could not have been caused by any kind of flattening or binding device because the surface of the occipital reveals the subtle convolutions inevitably present in unaltered skulls. Skulls that undergo any kind of shaping technique will always reveal such technique with a distortion of the bone surface. Lacking even a hint of evidence of shaping, and of any unnatural or premature fusing of any sutures, it is entirely safe to say that the extreme flattening of the skull was caused by its natural growth pattern and is not artificial. This too is significant.
15. Another of my concerns is that the external occipital protuberance (inion) is absent from its notable position in the center of the occipital bone, and indeed is represented by an actual slight fossa (depression) in the surface. (As mentioned earlier, the same is true for its internal counterpart, which has been greatly reduced.) It seems clear that the neck of this being attached to its skull much lower than in a normal skull, centered under the balance point for both lateral and medial flexion. Even more unusual, the neck itself seems to have a circumference somewhere in the range of 50% of usual neck volume, which presents yet another example of the thorough uniqueness of this specimen.
16. In addition to lacking frontal sinuses, there is no sign of the brow ridges evident in normal skulls. Its upper orbits are thin edged rather than rounded. Its zygomatic arches are greatly reduced and significantly lowered from their usual positions. Its mastoid processes are less than normal, as are all connective points for the lower face (which would attach to the coronoid process and condylar process of the missing mandible). Based on these observations, its lower face may have been as much as 50% reduced from normal. On the other hand, its inner ears are noticeably larger than normal, again pushing into the range of 50% larger. This is also true for the condyles abutting the spinal atlas.
17. A detached upper right maxilla contains two molars [recent note: one has been lost to testing]. Tooth wear on the molars indicates maturity was reached, yet another set of teeth are present in the maxilla and appear ready to take the place of those mature teeth when and if they are lost or are no longer useful. The question of age at death remains open.
18. Carbon 14 Dating has shown the Human Skull to be 900 years old ± 40 years
1. Dr Matthew Brown, a Dentist in London, made close-up x-rays images of the maxilla in September 2004. He states that the roots of unerrupted teeth are consistent with those of a child who was about 4½ yrs old.
2. Carbon 14 dating was also carried out on Starchild Skull Bone in July/August 2004 which produced the same result - 900 years old ± 40 years