Famous Giants and Causes for Acromegaly
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Famous Giants and Causes for Acromegaly

The menacing giant named Richard Kiel who played "Jaws" in the James Bond Movie, James Bond 007: Everything or Nothing, had a rare hormone condition called acromegaly.


Andre the Giant

suffered from acromegaly. He was a Worldwide Wresting Federation favorite before his death at the age of 47. Another famous actor had acromegaly. Richard Kiel was best known for his role in the James Bond movie, James Bond 007: Everything or Nothing, He played the menacing villain “Jaws.”

Causes for acromegaly

Acromegaly is a rare disease that results in the production of too much growth hormone. The growth hormone as well as other essential hormones are produced by the pituitary gland, which is a small bean shaped gland behind your nose at the base of your brain.

Growth hormone is also important for the regeneration of bones and tissues. The hormone stimulates the liver to produce another important hormone called “insulin-like growth factor-I (IGF-I).”

Most of the time a benign tumor is the cause of acromegaly in adults.

Pituitary tumors

The small benign (non-cancerous) tumor is also known as an adenoma. Besides the damage this benign tumor does by producing too much growth hormone, the tumor can press on the nerves and cause additional symptoms such as headaches and poor vision.

Nonpituitary tumors

Sometimes cancerous and non cancerous tumors in other parts of the body can cause acromegaly. These tumors are most notably found in the pancreas, adrenal glands, and the liver. Some of the tumors do secrete growth hormone while others secrete a hormone called growth hormone-releasing hormone (GH-RH) which not surprising, stimulates the pituitary gland to produce the overproduction of growth hormone.

Complications associated with acromegaly

As the disease progresses the symptoms will become more severe.

Here are some of the complications:

  • Hyptertension (high blood pressure)
  • Cardiomyopathy (enlargement of the heart)
  • Other forms of heart disease
  • Hypopituitarism which is reduces the production of other needed hormones leased by the pituitary gland
  • Diabetes
  • Uterine fibroids
  • Arthritis
  • Loss of vision
  • Polyps in the colon (pre-cancerous growths)
  • Spinal chord compression
  • Sleep apnea ( where the individual stops breathing for short periods of time while sleeping)
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome which is pain or tingling in the fingers caused by pressure on the wrist triggered by tissues pressing on the nerves.

Early treatment is necessary to relive or prevent these symptoms. Please go to the doctor as soon as you suspect that you may have acromegaly. Your doctor will determine if you do have this condition by physical examination and additional tests. The doctor will also rule out other disease before suspecting acromegaly.

If left untreated the disease can cause premature death.


Mayo clinic

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Comments (6)

This abnormality is truly difficult to deal with. I enjoyed that James Bond movie starring Jaws.

Very interesting and brilliantly informed article. Thanks, Carol.

Andre the Giant was a great character in the Princess Bride. Interesting article. Wasn't there a giant in the movie Big Fish too.

Judith I don't know but andre the giant is a real person, also the guy jaws in james bond, are real people suffering from this disease

Oh, yes, I misstated my comment. I meant to say that Andre the Giant played one of my favorite characters.

lol I got you now