Friday, February 21, 2014

Gigantism

Overview

Gigantism is a condition that causes an individual to grow uncontrollably at an extremely rapid rate. Gigantism is most commonly caused by a benign (non cancerous) tumor on the pituitary gland located in the brain. This form of gigantism occurs during childhood before the bone growth plates have fused together.
Elisany da Cruz Silva at age 17 from Brazil standing with boyfriend and family at a staggering 6ft 8 inches tall
 
Another form of gigantism known as
Acromegaly which develops later in life after the skeleton and organs have finished developing. Acromegaly is also caused by a tumor in the pituitary gland where excessive growth hormones are released. This form of gigantism occurs in about 6 in every 100,000 adults.

Tanya Angus as a teen at 5'8" and 130lbs (left) and Tanya at age 34 (right) weighting 660lbs at 6'6"

Symptoms

Some of the symptoms for gigantism developed during childhood include:
  • headaches
  • weakness
  • delayed puberty
  • irregular menstruation
  • large hands and feet with thick finger and toes
  • double vision
Some of the symptoms for the Acromegaly form of gigantism includes:
  • extreme fatigue
  • joint pain
  • hoarseness
  • large facial bones
  • weakness
  • excessive sweating
  • sleep apnea

Treatment

In some cases gigantism can be treated with surgery by removing the tumor. If the tumor is too large then the tumor can be treated with radiation; however, reducing growth hormones through this method can be a slow process. Gigantism can also be treated with a couple of medications known as Octerotide, and Pegvisomant.

World Records

The tallest man in the world to have ever lived was Robert Wadlow born February 11, 1918 and died July 15, 1940. Wadlow stood 8' 11" tall and was from Alton Illinois.
Wadlow, courtesy of BlogSpot.com
 
The tallest living man is  32 year-old Sultan Kosen of Turkey who stands at 8'3".
 
Sultan Kosen on his wedding day, courtesy of birleskibasin.com
 
The tallest woman to have ever lived, Zeng Jinlian of China was born on June 26, 1964 and died at the age of 17 due to complications of diabetes.
Zeng Jinlian courtesy of BlogSpot
 
The tallest living woman is 28 year-old Siddiqa Parveen of India who just underwent surgery to have the tumor causing excessive growth removed.
Siddiqa Parveen courtesy of mirror.co.uk

No comments:

Post a Comment