Hello fellow bloggers/blog readers,
For a long time I wondered…what’s up with me?
I was always a regular height, and I always grew the right amount each year, until around 2 years ago. All of a sudden I just kind of stopped growing, gradually my growth rate had slowed down meaning that I was growing less and less each year. It was very apparent because we knew that at that point in time I should have been growing like there was no tomorrow! But I just wasn’t, after about a year of not growing I became very self conscious and extremely anxious about my body. I had started to get a bit larger, and I had always been relatively slim. (My body was saving the energy for growing as fat- to put it simply) I could tell that something was wrong but I didn’t know what, I felt like I was weird and abnormal, everyone else had shot up, including my younger sister.
It wasn’t just me that had noticed that I wasn’t growing, my parents did too and they were a bit worried. After about a year my mum decided to take me to the doctor as well it was getting a bit peculiar as to why I hadn’t grown much. Our local doctor did blood tests then told us to see a paediatric doctor (a doctor who specialises in children). So we did that and I was issued for more tests and an MRI scan on my brain and a bone scan (to see how old my bones were).
We got the results back from the bone scan and the MRI. The bone scan showed that my bones were 11 years old and not 13. The MRI scan result wasn’t too good either, my Pituitary Gland (a gland in your head that controls lots of different hormones which make your body work in different ways) was unusually small and had given up producing hormones that my body needs, meaning that I would have remained the same height and not have grown or developed more at all. I then had to go back to the hospital for more tests. My Pituitary gland was not great. This is what a Pituitary Gland should look like, and here is what mine looks like:
So I have Empty Sella Syndrome and Hypopituitarism. Apparently I was born with it, which is quite rare, and I’ve done well to get as tall as I have! It was confirmed that my Pituitary Gland was not producing 2 important hormones. My blood tests should have been scoring around 7-10 for these hormones, but they were scoring a pathetic 0.1, meaning I’ve run out of what I need. One of these is the growth hormone, so I now have Growth Hormone Deficiency. For the other hormone (I don’t know it’s name) I will have to take tablets everyday for the rest of my life, and I need to keep having tests on different hormones that make sure other things in my body work too.
The growth hormone has to be put into the body- through the skin every day, first to make me grow and then to keep my bones strong. Now the way it has to be done is by injection and I have to do this every day. Being needle phobic I was terrified and felt quite worried when I found this out. (When a needle is put into my body I faint and sometimes throw up) But there was 1 option that didn’t involve needles, it was a special new technology all to do with air pressure. I was relieved, usually the doctor would give you some DVDs to take home and decide what way you want the hormone injected into your body, but knowing how bad I cope with needles, we straight away went for the needless one and I feel very privileged to have been offered this option.
So there you have it, that is my growing challenge that I am going to have to face. I will be updating you every month or so about my growth and how everything is going. So that you know that I am being looked after I want you to know that I will be seeing my consultant every 6 months, my specialist doctor every year and I will have a nurse that can come round my house at any time if I am having problem with the medication or if anything happens she will be someone I can talk to.