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Acromegaly Symptoms

Pituitary gland secretes hormones for human growth. This is located in bone cavity known as sella turcica at the base of brain. Growth of the benign tumor on pituitary gland causes excess production of human growth hormone leading to acromegaly. This is a rare and gradually developing disease. If diagnosed in the early stages, acromegaly can be cured by removing the tumor by performing surgery. As it is difficult to diagnose acromegaly symptoms or sometimes they are considered as aging signs and the treatment is delayed leading to serious consequences. Sometimes, it can also result in premature death.

Acromegaly Symptoms:
This condition develops gradually and is difficult to diagnose as one may miss the early symptoms. Often, people fail to notice the changes in their physical appearance and the condition remains unnoticed for many years. Both men and women are prone to this condition and can occur at any age. In children, it is called as gigantism. The signs of acromegaly are based on several factors such as its location, age of affected person, tumor size and the rate at which it grows. Symptoms may be of two types – one due to excessive secretion of hormone and other presence of tumor in brain. This condition afflicts physical appearance and health of the person. Following are the symptoms of acromegaly:

Changes in physical features:

  • Enlarged sebaceous glands
  • Swollen bones around the joints
  • Excessive growth of hair on the body
  • Bone overgrowth
  • Unexplained weight gain
  • Skin tags
  • Enlarged tongue
  • Coarse or oily skin
  • Swollen feet and hands
  • Enlarged facial features

These were the symptoms related to the physical appearance of a person. These signs develop gradually and go unnoticed.

Other symptoms:

  • Impotence
  • Menstrual problems in women
  • Snoring
  • Enlarged sinuses
  • Enlarged liver, kidneys and other organs
  • Joint pain
  • Headache
  • Husky voice
  • Body odor
  • Excessive sweating
  • Blurred vision
  • Muscle fatigue

These are some common acromegaly symptoms, which are often mistaken as signs of other health issues. Following are some acromegaly symptoms that need to be treated once for avoiding further complications.

Serious Acromegaly Symptoms:

  • Carpal tunnel syndrome
  • Sleep apnea
  • Depression
  • Arthritis
  • Goiter
  • Respiratory problems
  • Cardiovascular diseases
  • Colon polyps
  • Diabetes mellitus
  • Hypertension

Treatment for Acromegaly:
Those suffering with acromegaly are more susceptible to developing the above discussed symptoms, although it may not be observed in all. If the symptoms are identified in early stage, it can be treated successfully. Surgery is performed to remove the tumor in pituitary gland. It is the most common and effective treatment. If the tumors are extra large, surgery may not work well. In such cases, doctors suggest medical therapy as it helps in shrinking tumors. Radiation therapy is another treatment, if medicines do not work well.

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