Thursday, 9 February 2012

I Want Acromegaly

As many of you are no doubt aware, I'm the kind of sad and tragic person who has enough time in her life to trawl the internet for other blogs about pituitary adenomas. Due to a weird and extremely irritating Blogger glitch, I'm unable to follow anyone anymore, but I still seek them out.

And two separate sites I found today, both about acromegaly, got me thinking. They got me thinking so much that I suspect I'll have to split my thoughts out across a couple of posts, or risk literally boring my readers to death.

The first was this: a conversation on a forum begun by a guy who claims to want to have acromegaly.

Quick recap: Acromegaly is a serious illness caused by a rare brain tumour on the pituitary gland which releases growth hormone into the blood. It can cause uncontrolled growth throughout the body, especially the hands, feet, chin, nose, tongue and forehead. It can also cause impotence, congestive heart failure, kidney failure, diabetes, loss of vision, and death. It is a devastating diagnosis for those unlucky enough to have it.

I quote:

"I really want to have this condition. I want it because I have a "babyish" face and my facial bones are not as developed as they should be. I'd rather not get cosmetic surgeries such as chin impants and jaw implants. When my face becomes as masculine as I want it to be I'll just get treatment for it.

Also my hands are small for a mans and I'd like to have bigger hands.

[...] How can I induce acromegaly in my body? Is it even possible?"

This guy may be a genuine idiot, or he may be a troll, but the fact is that there really are people fuckwits out there who inject themselves with growth hormone because they think it will make them better at sports/bodybuilding.* These people are effectively giving themselves mild acromegaly, despite the fact that there is really very little evidence that it could improve sporting performance, and it may actually decrease stamina despite increasing muscle mass.

Those of us cursed with epic fail bodies that go haywire at the slightest provocation tend to strongly resent it when fit and healthy people take risks with their health and fitness for the purpose of vanity. When I was having the packing removed from my nose after my brain surgery, and it was incredibly painful and there was blood everywhere,** the first thought that went through my head was: "Why would anyone ever have a nose job by choice?" (Plus, as a person who regularly has health professionals sticking needles in me, I can't get my head around someone actually volunteering for human pincushion duty).

Going around saying that you want to have acromegaly to gain a better jawline is like saying you want to get cancer so you can lose weight. Not only is it incredibly disrespectful to those people who seriously suffer with a horrible illness, it's just incredibly stupid. Injecting yourself with growth hormone so you can stand on a stage with a bunch of other people and flex your muscles impressively... words fail me. Not only are you putting your body and your health at risk, but you're cheating. All the other hard work you did to get those muscles is wiped out. You didn't win because you happen to be the muscly guy who worked the hardest and had the best muscly genetics out of all the hardworking muscly guys with muscly genes; you won because YOU'RE A DUMBASS.

Actually got surprisingly angry writing this! My next post on the topic of acromegaly, Cushing's disease, and physical appearance is coming soon...

*I recommend clicking on that link and scrolling down to the photo of the incredibly muscular man cuddling his pillow with his giant melon-packed arms, it's hilarious.

**In fairness, apparently it's not usually as bad as that, I just have a particularly objectionable nose. If you're squeamish, don't continue reading: The first time the nurse tried to pull the packing out, I asked "How badly will it hurt?" and the nurse replied "A bit." I am fairly good at dealing with pain usually, so I braced myself. She gave the packing a firm nug and it felt like my nose had exploded. I shrieked and she gave me a slightly unsympathetic look and told me I had to "get it over with". On the second attempt, she got the packing out, along with really quite a surprising gush of blood that went all over the floor. It hurt so much I was physically shaking and the nurse was forced to admit that it wasn't usually quite so horrendous.


  1. Sounds a lot like what I wrote here:

    Completely agree with you!

  2. Wow, interesting article! It's definitely an issue that seems to polarise opinion. Looking at what you've said about cosmetic surgery - I'm always amazed that people who've had cosmetic surgery will then go back and do it all over again, either with a new procedure or getting implants replaced or enlarged etc. Crazy!

  3. Great post! Thank you so much for addressing this! I feel like more and more I see these naive (polite for ignorant?) articles or advertisements about how extra growth hormone makes your life better. Did you see this one in Vanity Fair?

    I do sometimes see celebrities showing slight signs of acromegaly, and I wonder if they feel the same symptoms (fatigue, aches, emotional swings, etc, etc). I wonder how it could possibly be worth it?!

    1. No, I hadn't seen that article, thanks for the link! I have seen brief mentions in various magazines (usually in doctors' waiting rooms, lol!) that this celebrity or that one might be using HGH and it really does just boggle the mind... bizarre.