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Man was the only person in history to be a dwarf and a giant

Man was the only person in history to be a dwarf and a giant

His enlarged hands and feet were the first sign of what was to come

As human beings we are all more than aware of dwarfism and gigantism, but did you know that there was a man who had both?

What can only be described as the curious case of Adam Rainer began back in Graz, Austria in 1899, when he was born to two perfectly average-sized parents.

However, as he grew and developed, it became clear that he had a condition pertaining to his height, and by the time he was 21, he was less than five feet tall - four feet six inches, to be precise.

As a result of his small stature and age, doctors assumed that Adam would never grow any taller as most people have finished growing by that age.

Adam Rainer was initially diagnosed with dwarfism.
Adam Rainer/YouTube

This meant that when he enlisted to fight in World War One, he had to undergo testing that saw him diagnosed with dwarfism.

As reported by the Mayo Clinic, in order to be diagnosed with dwarfism, an adult must have a height of four feet 10 inches or less.

Unfortunately for Adam, because of this, he was simply deemed too small to be an effective soldier.

However, despite being diagnosed with dwarfism, doctors did note that he had unusually large hands and feet for a person with the condition.

This was the first sign of the unusual case that was about to come.

While most people stop growing in their early 20s, Rainer had a sudden growth spurt that saw him grow by over two feet in the space of just a decade.

This meant that he went from being a four feet six-inch dwarf to a gigantic seven feet and one inch tall.

In order to be classified as a giant, a person must be more than seven feet tall.

Unsurprisingly, doctors soon realised that Adam was something of a medical mystery, which is why Dr Mandl and Dr Windholz began to examine him around 1930.

Rainer after his growth spurt next to an average-sized man.
Adam Rainer/YouTube

They came to the conclusion that he'd developed a tumour that pressed on his pituitary gland - which is what controls growth in humans - and this is what led to him suddenly growing so tall.

The specific name for this condition is acromegaly, and the Mayo Clinic describes it as 'a hormonal disorder that develops when your pituitary gland produces too much growth hormone during adulthood.'

One of the defining symptoms of the rare condition are enlarged hands and feet.

The sudden growth spurt was not without its health consequences, and Adam had issues with his spine, forehead and jaw - as well as his lips.

Doctors attempted to remove the tumour in 1931, despite it being a high-risk operation, and amazingly it was successful - stopping Adam from growing any further.

But sadly, his health problems from his 10-year growth spurt continued and eventually resulted in his death at the age of just 51. He was seven feet and eight inches tall.

Featured Image Credit: Adam Rainer/YouTube

Topics: News, Health, Viral