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Acromegaly

Symptoms   
Diseases & Conditions A-Z

| A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U |

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DIABETES AND ENDOCRINE SYSTEM

Endocrine System

  • enlarged hands
  • enlarged feet
  • widened fingers or toes due to skin overgrowth with swelling, redness, and pain
  • enlarged jaw (prognathism) and tongue
  • enlarged facial bones
  • thickening of the skin, skin tags
  • enlarged sebaceous glands
  • hoarseness
  • Headache
  • easy fatigue
  • excessive Sweating
  • decreased muscle strength (weakness)
  • limited joint mobility
  • joint pain (hip pain, knee pain, ankle pain, foot pain, pain over the small joints of the foot, shoulder pain, elbow pain, wrist pain, hand pain, pain over the small joints of the hand, or pain in any other joint)
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome
  • widely spaced teeth
  • swelling of the bony areas around a joint


Additional symptoms that may be associated with this disease:

  • weight gain (unintentional)
  • hair, excessive on females

Signs and tests   

  • The level of growth hormone is high.
  • The level of IGF-1 (insulin-like growth factor 1) is high.
  • A spine X-ray shows abnormal bone growth.
  • A cranial MRI or cranial CT scan may show a pituitary tumor.

Causes

The pituitary, a small gland located at the base of your brain behind the bridge of your nose, produces a number of hormones. One hormone, called growth hormone (GH), plays an important role in managing your physical growth. When GH is secreted into your bloodstream, it triggers your liver to produce a hormone called insulin-like growth factor-I (IGF-I). In turn, IGF-I stimulates the growth of bones and other tissues. If your pituitary gland makes too much GH, excessive amounts of IGF-I can result. Too much IGF-I can cause abnormal growth of the skeleton and other signs and symptoms characteristic of acromegaly and gigantism.

In adults, a tumor is the most common cause of too much GH production:

  • Pituitary tumors. In 99 percent of people with acromegaly, the cause is a noncancerous (benign) tumor (adenoma) of the pituitary gland. The tumor secretes excessive amounts of growth hormone causing many of the signs and symptoms of acromegaly. Some of the symptoms of acromegaly, such as headaches and impaired peripheral vision, are due to the tumor mass pressing on nearby brain tissues.

  • Non-pituitary tumors. In a small percentage of people with acromegaly, tumors in other parts of the body, such as the lungs, pancreas, ovaries or adrenal glands, cause the disorder. Sometimes, these tumors actually secrete GH. In other cases, the tumors produce a hormone called growth hormone-releasing hormone (GH-RH), which stimulates the pituitary to make more GH.

Acromegaly > 1 > 2 > 3

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This information is provided for general medical education purposes only and is not meant to substitute for the independent medical judgment of a physician relative to diagnostic and treatment options of a specific patient's medical condition.
In no event will The DrEddyClinic.com be liable for any decision made or action taken in reliance upon the information provided through this web site.

 


 



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Last Modified : 05/14/08 07:34 AM