Nowadays, the science can explain the phenomenon of gigantism, but a few centuries ago, people who were much taller than the average, were not always seen with good eyes…….
One of the most common causes of extreme height is pituitary gigantism and occurs due to an over-secretion of the growth hormone.
A tumor often stimulates this over-secretion on the pituitary gland, the one that secretes the human growth hormone. The people who are affected by such medical conditions never stop growing, and they usually live until their twenties or thirties.
Robert Wadlow ( 1918-1940, measured 272 cm, 8 ft 11.1 in)
Robert Wadlow holds the record for the tallest person ever; he suffered from a medical condition that affected his pituitary gland and caused growth hormone over-secretion.
He was 8 ft 11 in tall and is confirmed as the tallest person that ever lived.
Robert Wadlow was born in the United States, Illinois, Alton, in 1918.
Suffering from pituitary gland hypertrophy, he grew in height all his life.
When he was eight years old, he already was 6 ft 2 in and had been built a special desk in school. In those times, there were no treatments for this medical condition.
Wadlow suffered from many “side effects” due to this hormonal imbalance: he could barely walk, his bones were brittle, and, as he grew older, he had to wear leg braces.
Named “The Giant of Illinois,” Robert Wadlow died in 1940, at only 22 years old, because of a blister that was caused by one of his leg braces.
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