Fingerprint Abnormalities

Skin Abnormalities 


Dysplasia occurs during faulty development of all or part of a person’s friction skin. Fingerprints appear as dots, similiar to a dog’s nose, and are unclassifiable but are still identifiable. 

Split Ridges 

Split ridges occur when there is extra skin on either side of a person’s ridges. When fingerprinted, they appear as dots or very thin ridges inbetween the firm ridges. Fingers will be slippery and the pattern inconsistent.


Cuspal ridges contain no arches, loops or whorls. They appear as straight lines and are unclassifiable. 

Malformations of the Hands & Feet 


Polydactyls have extra fingers and/or toes. All are fingerprinted and placed on file.


Snydactyls have conjoined fingers with one big thumb, it resembles a mitten-shaped hand. Often the fingers are webbed.


Ectrodactyls have a small palm with only 3 long, stick-like fingers. A common misconception is where to place each finger on the fingerprint card.

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