- Pickwickian syndrome
- The combination of obesity, somnolence (sleepiness), hypoventilation (underbreathing), and plethoric (red) face. The syndrome is so named because of the "fat and red-faced boy in a state of somnolency" that Charles Dickens described in his novel, The Pickwick Papers. (The same boy is thought by some experts possibly to have had the Prader-Willi syndrome).
* * *Pick·wick·ian syndrome (')pik-'wik-ē-ən- n obesity accompanied by somnolence and lethargy, hypoventilation, hypoxia, and secondary polycythemiaPick·wick 'pik-.wik Samuel literary character. Pickwick is the title character in the novel The Posthumous Papers of the Pickwick Club (1836-37) by Charles Dickens. In the novel one of the characters, Joe, is described as a „fat and red-faced boy in a state of somnolence.” The term Pickwickian syndrome was first used by C. S. Burwell in an article on the syndrome in 1956. The name was chosen because Dickens's description was the first description of the syndrome found in literature.
* * *pick·wick·i·an syndrome (pik-wikґe-ən) [from the description of Joe, the fat boy in Dickens' Pickwick Papers] see under syndrome.
Medical dictionary. 2011.