Clémentine Delait Clattaux (1865–1934), the Bearded Woman from Thaon-les-Vosges, France, did not suffer from her extreme hirsutism, but used it to her advantage. Her beard started to grow when she turned 18 and at the age of 25 she decided to stop shaving her beard and let it grow. She had regular menstrual cycles between ages 12 and 35. She was diagnosed with signs and symptoms of hyperandrogenism like hirsutism, impressive strength and muscularity and a deep voice, but also with morbid obesity. She never gave birth to a child. At the age of 39, she was officially allowed by the French Government to wear man’s clothes. She suffered from rheumatism and died because of a stroke. The most probable cause of her hirsutism was polycystic ovary syndrome. Alternatively, an incomplete block in the adrenal steroid synthesis, like nonclassical 21-hydroxylase deficiency can be considered.

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Gynecological Endocrinology
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

de Herder, W. (2019). Clémentine Delait (1865–1934), the most famous bearded lady on the continent in the 20th century. Gynecological Endocrinology. doi:10.1080/09513590.2019.1683823