Acromegaly

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Acromegaly is a syndrome that results when the pituitary gland produces excess growth hormone (hGH) after epiphyseal plate closure at puberty. Acromegaly most commonly affects adults in middle age, and can result in severe disfigurement, serious complicating conditions, and premature death if unchecked. Because of its slow progression, acromegaly is difficult to diagnose early on and is often missed after many years of progression. It is characterized by elongation and enlargement of the bones of the extremities, face, and jaw. First, it is crucial that the massage therapist obtains clearance for massage from the client’s health care provider. With the enlargement of the bones and associated muscles, it is possible that the client will experience a significant amount of pain due to the stress of the larger, heavier structures on the joints. The goals of the massage should be to decrease pain and increase relaxation. The techniques most appropriate would be gentle gliding strokes and kneading.

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