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15.
An skin disease called Harlequin-type ichthyosis wich causes the skin to become diamond plated, as well as the eyes to turn out and the ears, nose, and appendages to be horribly deformed or non-existant. The mouth is drawn into a painful rendtion of a jesters smile. The babies usually die within days due to severe bacterial infection of the cracked skin.

Recently an internet phenomenon has started with people linking others to pictures of harlequin babies in an attempt to shock them. While not particularly shocking to many, some people are truly horrified; however these people are wrong. The correct response is to laugh long and laugh hard at the suffering of other human beings. Many bleeding heart liberals wish people would stop posting these pictures because it's "inhumane". They obviously haven't learned that internet trolls have no soul.
Dude, my friend sent me this *linkage*

OMFG WTF is that?!!??!

Harlequin Fetus

Oh, lulz
by Rena Maniacle May 25, 2006
 
1.
Also known as the Harlequin type ichthyosis, the most severe form of congenital ichthyosis.

The Harlequin Fetus is a baby born with unusually hardened keratin layer in fetal skin. This creates diamond shape scales instead of skin. The eyes, ears, mouth, and other appendages are also horribly contracted and deformed.

The scales limet the poor child's movement, and cracks where the skin folds. This takes away the skins main fuction; protection. Bacteria get into the skin, causing infections.

The term harlequin comes from both the baby's facial expression and the diamond-shaped pattern of the scales, which are caused by severe hyperkeratosis. 17th century entertainers known as jesters, or harlequins, wore costumes with diamond patterns on them, as well as a particular style of face paint. The features of the harlequin fetus mimic this stylized makeup, and their faces are often pulled tight into grim parodies of a clown's smile.

Survival is normally only hours.
The Harlequin Fetus is a very sad being. It makes me sad to see internet assholes posting its pictures in hoping to get frightened reactions from people.

There are plenty of goatse, tubgirl, and lemon party pics on the internet.
by Jimmithy October 19, 2004
 
2.
Y'all wanna know what harlequin fetus is? Google-image it. Actually, don't. Seriously don't. Just as chicken put it, the most horrifying image of a disease anybody has ever seen. The fucking thing scared the shit out of me for months after i saw it. The diesease was first observed in South Carolina by Reverend Oliver Hart.

"On Thursday, April ye 5, 1750, I went to see a most deplorable object of a child, born the night before of one Mary Evans in "Chas"town. It was surprising to all who beheld it, and I scarcely know how to describe it. The skin was dry and hard and seemed to be cracked in many places, somewhat resembling the scales of a fish. The mouth was large and round and open. It had no external nose, but two holes where the nose should have been. The eyes appeared to be lumps of coagulated blood, turned out, about the bigness of a plum, ghastly to behold. It had no external ears, but holes where the ears should be. The hands and feet appeared to be swollen, were cramped up and felt quite hard.
The back part of the head was much open. It made a strange kind of noise, very low, which I cannot describe. It lived about forty-eight hours and was alive when I saw it."
Sucks for anyone who sees it.
Harlequin Fetus kinda looks like a pepperoni pizza.
by Bubby the Tour Guide January 16, 2004
 
3.
A poor, misunderstood soul often linked to by inconsiderate people in attempt to scare others. These people do not understand pain and that children born with such a disease are nothing to be made fun of and are humans just like them. Of course, the disease is upsetting to many, however, the agony that a harlequin fetus is cursed with is far worse than the shock anyone could receive from viewing an image of their suffering.
A harlequin fetus wouldn't want to scare you; it was born that way. You don't have control over the fact that you are born without a skin disease, so why should people blame it for that?
by Johno Bono August 26, 2005
 
4.
A rare birth defect resulting in a baby with several deformities such as red balls for eyes, cracked skin, missing nose and ears, and a mouth disfigured into an erie smile. Not for the faint of heart, as it can be somewhat shocking on first glance. The baby usually dies quickly because of infection due to germs leaking through its cracked skin. Images of a harlequin fetus are often sent to others as jokes, but in my opinion it is sad how others make a joke out of a deeply suffering human being.
Email subject: Cool nude pics! Pamela Anderson!

*User opens email*
*sees Harlequin fetus*

"OMFG!"
by KappaWing February 15, 2006
 
5.
Harlequin fetus refers to an extremly rare genetic disorder that affects the formation of skin. Skin is ridged cracked and hardened, forming plates. Since these plates cannot flex deep cracks form allowing infection to penetrate the skin immediatly upon birth. The disorder distorts the facial features and constricts the digits. Harlequin fetuses are either stillborn or die very soon after birth.

Mothers with a family history of the disease are screened during the early months of pregnancy, pregnancies affected by it are terminated.
Genetic disorders, such as Harlequin Fetus, that affect the way we look have and will always evoke fear and revulsion, it's written into our DNA along with the rest of our reflexes and instincts.

We do not, however have to provoke this ourselves by turning images of the effects of genetic disorders into freak shows.
by Dr Chase Alex November 16, 2005
 
6.
An inhumanly disturbing birth defect. A victim would have extremely hard, bleach-white skin, and possibly red blotches near its eyes. As the word harlequin suggests, it has abnormally-shaped skin which breaks off easily, as well as odd-looking lips. It does not live to be very long, as it loses too much blood.
Seriously, PLEASE don't look it up. I know I sound like a chicken, but believe me, there is nothing worse I have seen in my entire life.
It is hard to believe that the harlequin fetus is human.
by chicken December 19, 2003
 
7.
It's not disturbing, just really sad to see an image of someone living such a painful exsistence. It's sad & not scary, it's not something to be feared or nervously laughed at.....it's a diseas but their still humans-there are ppl who look more human but couldn't be more disturbed on the inside-fear & be disturbed by them, not a little baby/human/fetus.............it's the most inhumane thing to do, to say it's disturbing is wrong.
They are little humans inside
by MagdaGobles June 19, 2005