The incredible story of Adam Reiner, the Gulliver of humanity
Adam Rainer was born in Graz, Austria in 1899 into a family of absolutely normal height. His father and brother were 1.75 meters tall and his mother 1.65 meters. So nothing seems to have influenced his physical appearance from a genetic point of view.
However, at the age of 21, his height was barely 1.18 meters. Therefore, Rainer could be considered as affected by dwarfism. But just when it seemed that his development had stopped, something unexpectedly started to change: his hands and feet began to grow.
The Austrian quickly went from a shoe size of 34.5 to 43 and his feet grew within a few years, up to 5 cm taller. His hands also grew in the same way. But nothing had yet changed in his stature, which remained under 4 feet tall.
Again, something unexpected happened at the age of 30. His hands and feet also grew and, like them, the rest of his body began to grow uncontrollably. By the age of 50, Rainer had grown to 2 meters.
The specialists, scientists and doctors who studied his case realized that the trigger for this man’s sudden growth was a pituitary tumour that was disrupting his hormones.
The operation was rather difficult, but the doctors decided to operate on Rainer anyway. The tumour was removed. Unfortunately, the operation did not change much. At the first visit, the doctors measured him again and discovered that, although his height was the same as before, his back was even more arched: Rainer was still growing.
The Austrian, this unusual man continued to grow until the end of his life. When he died (in 1950, at the age of 51), he was 2.34 meters tall; his hands were 23.9 cm and his feet 33.3 cm (he wore size 50.5). The man, who grew in a few years of 116 cm, still holds the record of the “most variable height”.
A real medical miracle, in the end, Adam still holds the distinction to this day of being the only person in recorded history to have had both dwarfism and gigantism.