LAS VEGAS, NV – Tanya Angus was a perfectly healthy 20 year old woman, when she noticed that her clothes were beginning to not fit.
At the time she was 5′ 11″ and 115 pounds. But ten years later, she now stands at 6′ 6″ and 480 pounds, and continues to grow. After multiple misdiagnoses, Angus was finally told she is suffering from acromegaly, often associated with gigantism.
Acromegaly is a syndrome in which the pituitary gland produces excessive amounts of human growth hormone. There are a number of causes that can create this problem, but unfortunately for Angus, she has the most common and most difficult to treat.
A brain tumor has wrapped itself around her pituitary gland, causing the overproduction of hormone. Doctors have performed multiple surgeries to remove the tumor but it repeatedly grows back.
In 1999, when Angus began growing out of her shoes and suffering from headaches, she went to a few local doctors to get checked out. Unfortunately, they all dismissed her complaints as minor issues. It was not until Angus moved back to Las Vegas that her sister immediately recognized something was wrong and got her properly diagnosed.
Now, Angus may suffer permanently due to how long she was afflicted before being treated. Doctors have yet to find a treatment that can help her. She decided to come forward and speak to the media so that others may learn from her predicament and get treated early.
Acromegaly affects 2 out of 1,000,000 per year. Some other well known acromegaly sufferers include actor Paul Benedict and self-help expert Tony Robbins.
The most recognizable victim may be pro-wrestler Andre the Giant. One of the WWF’s most famous wrestlers, Andre was billed anywhere from 6′ 10″ to 7′ 4″ tall and 500-565 pounds. He went on to famously play a gentle giant in the film The Princess Bride After refusing to be treated for his condition, he died at the early age of 46 due to cardiac complications.