A doctor in Boston says the woman in the “Mona Lisa” portrait was suffering from an illness, possibly a serious thyroid condition.

Dr. Mandeep Mehra is the medical director for the Heart and Vascular Center at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston. 

Dr. Mehra believes Lisa Gherardini, also known as Mona Lisa, was not well when she sat for the portrait in 1503. 

“If you notice carefully, she has absolutely no eyebrows,” he said. 

In addition to the loss of eyebrows, the doctor revealed a receding hairline, a lesion near her left eye, a puffy neck, and swollen hands.  

“The diagnosis that I believe is operative here is an underactive thyroid gland or hypothyroidism,” Dr. Mehra said. 

He explained that the abnormalities were not simple missteps or mistakes by the artist. 

“That is the thing about the Mona Lisa is that Leonardo da Vinci was an uncanny artist who depicted accuracy like no one else,” he said. “He was an anatomist.”

What makes Dr. Mehra’s analysis of the Mona Lisa different than ones in the past, is that he took into consideration the circumstance leading up to the painting. 

He examined lifestyle, dietary patterns, as well as other painted portraits of the time period that depicts similar signs of a hidden disease.