Monthly Archives: June 2013

A Study On The Possibility That Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome Might Lead To Adult Height Growth

Recently a women named Allison would write a brief message to the website telling me a rather interesting story about her own life which made me very curious.

First Message

Hi, I’m 25 and have grown an 1.5″ over the past year (measurements were confirmed at several different places at several different times of the day). I was 5’5″ at age 10 or 11 and only grew 3/4″ by my mid-teens. Most recently I was over 5’7″. The really odd thing is that I have DDD and my latest spinal MRIs have shown increased degradation. So if anything I should be shorter, not taller.

I did have a brain MRI in my teens and was told I had “an overly generous pituitary gland.” Do you think this could indicate an issue that needs to be examined by a neurologist?

My Reply

Your case is very interesting. Would you be interested in coming on to do a podcast episode on how your height has increased over the years?

Second Message

I’m a pretty nervous public speaker, so I don’t think I would be a good guest on a podcast. I’d be happy to answer any questions via email though.

I just spoke with my spinal orthopedist and he did say it was very unusual and the only potential cause he could think of was a pituitary adenoma. I was recently diagnosed with Ehlers-Danlos syndrome and joined an online support group for the condition. I’ve been talking to the online community and many have had a similar late life growth spurt, which is weird since most of us have osteoarthritis and should technically be getting shorter. So maybe there’s a link to EDS or maybe it’s just far more common than anyone has realized.

My Email To Her

Hello Allison,

First, I wanted to thank you for coming on the website and giving a comment about your condition and your late life growth spurt. This type of thing is something that I as a researcher have been searching for.

It is highly unusual for anyone to experience such a thing and I wanted to ask you a few questions about this.

1. First, would you mind telling me what website or forum you are getting the support for EDS?

My intention is to validate that your individual case is more common and has happened to other people. I am hoping to find maybe forum threads and posts which say that they realized that they have had an late life growth spurt to substantiate some claims.

2. I will be doing more research on your condition since it is a disorder I have not been aware off.

From just a quick look on the WebMDs and Wikipedia, your condition is extremely interesting and attractive as a research project.

3. It is perfectly okay that you don’t wish to come on the podcast. I will be happy to give your message to the listeners because they are desperate for some good news.

4. Can you tell me the numbers, like how tall you were before, how tall you are now, at what age you experienced the growth, and your growth pattern throughout life?

Thank you again for any clues on this endeavor.

Her Email Back

Hi Michael,

1. The Ehlers-Danlos National Foundation has a support forum on

2. If your intention is to further research the condition, they just opened up a dedicated research facility in Towson, MD at the Harvey Institute for Human Genetics. The leading authority on the condition is Dr. Francomano.

These are the two best websites for more information:

4. I was taller than most kids for most of my childhood. By the time I was 10, I was already 5’5″ but only grew 3/4″ over the next couple of years and then stopped in my mid teens. I see my general practitioner two times a year (along with a host of specialists) who measures me at every visit. This past visit (I believe it was in August) I was measured at over 5’7″ without shoes on. Since then, the measurement has been replicated at other medical facilities.

A lot of people with EDS that I spoke with attributed the late growth spurt to pilates and physical therapy. We have a tendency to have many disc herniations, DDD, and pes planus, so I can see how orthotics and improved posture could add an extra inch. However, this has not been the case for me.

My Last Message

Thank you for your quick response.

I hope that you will find a way to minimize the pain. Is there anything I can do for you since you have been so helpful?

Her Last Message

Just help raise awareness on EDS! So few people (even doctors) really know what it is, making it difficult to seek medical care.

I was just trying to find reasons for the mysterious growth spurt and 99% of the sites I found were just sketchy people trying to convince others they had a magical pill to increase height. Your site was the only one I found that seemed honest and informative, so I was just hoping someone might have an explanation.

But I’m sure I’ll get some answers soon. I know most people would be happy to start growing again, but it’s so unusual that I don’t want to just assume it’s a benign occurrence and ignore it.

Thanks for the interest!

The Research

From the way this person was answering my questions it seems that they are being genuine and not lying about this type of occurence. She did claim that other people who was suffering the same condition as her, with a rare condition known as Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome also claimed that they saw increased height in adulthood, although she said at the end of our exchange of messages that they could have gotten that from pilates or physical therapy. Usually the Ehlers-Danlos should actually lead to reduced height since people develop scoliosis, arthritis, and other joint related problems from having such flexible joints and skin.

I would look at the website and find the Support Group she was talking about from typing in the term “Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome” into the search bar at the top. Click HERE for the results. I did not read through every comment or post but it seems that this condition causes a lot of pain which is often very hard to diagnose.

Many people would think EDS is actually fibromyalgia. The thing about Fibromyalgia is that it’s exact cause is not known. Fibromyalgia is often used as an umbrella term to refer to any type of pain that is in the joints, skin , and muscle as well as fatigue. In my opinion, the doctor is misdiagnosing the patient suffering from a still undiagnosed, unknown disorder at the time.

What often happens is that when a physician is not knowledgeable enough on a certain area of medical field, and their patient gives them the symptoms of fibromyalgia, they are too quick to call it fibromyalgia. The reason is because it is easy and simple. I personally believe that  the disorder known as  Fibromyalgia does not exist, but is actually the summation of a bunch of symptoms of something else that was never diagnosed accurately. It is a disorder/symptom created by unknowledgeable physicians to write off their patient’s pains.

So my research into this new disorder begins, with the usual google and wikipedia search. A search on Google turns up mainly the Wikipedia article on Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome

The two studies that she linked to are…

  1. Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, Hypermobility Type
  2. What is Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome?

After spending a good half an hour reading up on the disorder, this is what I have learned so far.

From Allison’s 1st source, I would learn that the EDS type known as Hypermobility Type is the least severe. The skin is described to be soft and “mildly hyperextensible”. Dislocations happen a lot. This often eventually lead to degenerative joint disease. Chronic pain will set in and it will decrease both mental and physical well being. Bruising will increase.

To diagnose this condition, a proper family genetic history will need to be done. The actual mutation that causes this disorder is not known yet. The actual way that at least the hypermobility type of EDS gets transmitted is through autosomal dominant process, meaning that the child of a person with the disorder has a 50% chance of getting it, but if two parents with the mutation had a child, that child would have a 100% chance of getting it.

To manage this disorder, since there is no cure, people focus on pain management from medication and use wheel chairs, walkers, canes, and also get physical therapy to reduce the chance for skin tearing and joint dislocations. Extreme care is taken to avoid unneccesary injuries.

There is also a digestive system effect from the disorder. It causes all sorts of intestinal disorders like…

  1. gastritis
  2. reflux
  3. delayed gastric emptying
  4. irritable bowel syndrome

From Allison’s 2nd source, I would learn that EDS  actually is not one type, but has 6 types of disorders. It is mainly characterized by two conditions, which is the hypermobility of the joints where joints can be pulled much farther in directions and degrees than what it should normally be ale to to, and the stretchability of skin. The skin is usually soft and easy to break and bruise. It leads to scarring very easily and when the skin breaks, the ability of the scar to heal is decreased a lot.

It seems that Ehlers-Danlos syndrome is actually kind of common, currently believed to infected 1 out of every 3000 people on average and it does not discriminate on race or sex.

It is a genetic disease which is passed down hereditarily through two ways, autosomal dominant and autosomal recessive. It is rather hard to diagnose the condition of Ehlers Danlos Syndrome and it is harder to diagnose which type of Ehlers Danlos Syndrome someone might have out of the 6 that is currently classified. Thee disease does not really decrease life expectancy except when it has an effect on the vascular tissue structure’s integrity. The disorder does mean that even blood vessels can tear easily. If a major vein or aorta is torn, then that would lead to early death.

From Wikipedia I would learn…

It seems that Ehlers Danlos Syndrome is caused by a defect in the synthesis of Collagen, whether type I, III, or V. It is interesting that it is not stated that Collagen Type II synthesis is disrupted. That means that hyaline cartilage should still be relatively intact. Collagen is in tissue to resist deformation. If the collagen is removed, then the body looses it ability to push back against any type of mechanical outside stimuli, causing the body to deform and possibly break as a result of any heavy loading. The tissues that are made of Type 1, 3, and 5 Collagen will become more elastic and maybe even become plastically deformed.

The wikipedia article is much more advanced and longer than I cared to read so I will just cherry pick the parts which I felt is most important for the reader who is only interested in knowing whether the disorder might give us a clue on how to increase height in adulthood.

  • The joints themselves develop hypermobility. 
  • Osteopenia aka low bone density
  • Stretchy ligaments and tendons which often leads to tearing
  • Deformities of the spine can occur leading to scoliosis and kyphosis
  • The joint also develops extremely high chance for dislocations and subluxations
  • Chronic Degenerative Joint Disease
  • Early onset of advanced osteoporosis

Implications For Height Increase Applications

Allison admits in our exchange of emails that it is more likely that many people have gotten an increase in height in late life because they started to get physical therapy and do pilates to eleviate pain from the symptoms of EDS. It seems that people who develop EDS end up more often on the extreme ends of height distribution. They are either extremely tall or extremely short. The arthritis and spinal issues which cause limb joint and vertebral curvature.

The only way to explain what happened with her, why she has seen increased height in adulthood, is probably is that because the joints are so hypermobilized and people with EDS basically have something similar to double jointedness, it is possible that her increased measured height is from her vertebrate, specifically cervical vertebrate being popped open slightly more when she stands up fully straight for a height measurement. There is no way that the knee joints can be popped up slightly due to joint hypermobility due to the laws of physics.

There is no way that a person can use muscle action to pull the upper part of their body higher from their lower leg portions, which is what would have to happen for a person to look taller for a height measurement since that would be the equivalent of someone pulling themselves up against the gravitational force of their weight and levitating.

There is a 2nd possibility on why her increase in height is possible

Since she did say that her doctor suspects she has pituitary adenoma and she was said to have had a larger than average pituitary gland in childhood, it could be that she does have an increase in GH release into her system than average. For most people, that increase in GH and the overactive pituitary gland would not lead to height increase.

However she has two disorders that is going on. The joint hypermobility that maybe her knee joint allows for the tibia and femur to be pulled slightly out of their sockets when she sits down. The GH increase floods the articular chondrocytes and causing the increase in articular cartilage thickness. When she stands up, the increase cartilage layer thickness means that she became taller.

Editing Wikipedia Articles On Epiphyseal Growth Plates And Low Intensity Pulsed Ultrasound

I was reading an article today about how a person was able to edit Wikipedia articles to help with his online niche websites and I wanted to try to test this idea.

I have been using Wikipedia as a resource to do research since I was in college and it has been amazingly helpful and useful. It seems that anyone in the world can edit the Wikipedia articles as long as they are really being helpful and trying to create a better resource.

So I created my own Wikipedia account under the username Height_Analyst and did a slight edit on the articles for Low Intensity Pulsed Ultrasound and Epiphyseal Plate

Right after the sentence where it states that Dr. Chen of the University of Alberta thinks that LIPUS can possibly lead to “grow taller by stimulating bone growth” I added the sentence “However it has not been shown to be able to help in bone longitudinal growth when combined with bioengineered cartilage pellets for growth plate induced fractures”

I referenced this study from a university in Hong Kong of the Department of Orthopaedics and Traumatology where the researchers wanted to see whether LIPUS can contribute towards the bone longitudinal growth with a bioengineered cartilage pellet as the primary bone growth method which is used to repair an induced growth plate physeal fracture in lab rabbits and also lead to increased bone growth.

I wrote an old post about the study already in the past entitled “Bioengineered Cartilage Pellets And LIPUS For Longtitudinal Growth (Huge Breakthrough!)

With the epiphyseal plate wikipedia article, I would add the sentence “Some studies have come out showing that growth plate cartilage has been successfully grown from autologous chondrocyte implants within alginate hydrogel scaffolds using a growth factor stimuli of RGD peptides” right after the sentence which states that beyond full epiphyseal plate closure, the only way to alter one’s height is through distraction osteogenesis.

The two sources that I cited was the post I wrote about the fact that the research and the original paper which showed that growing bone-cartilage mixtures that were very similar to epiphyseal cartilage has been grown entitled “Engineering growing tissues” by researchers at the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor more than a decade ago.

The main point of the 2nd edit was to show that the idea of combining tissue engineering principles with stem cell research have already created new growth plates. If orthopedic surgeons really wanted to, they can implant these growth plates into human bones and it will lead to renewed bone  growth.


Natural Height Growth Is 1 Years Old

I have looked at the statistics on this website and the date at which this website was created seemed to have been 1 years ago.

The very first post ever written entitled “Why This?” was written and posted on June 27th. The hosting server seems to show that this website was actually created in July 22 of 2012 but the point is that it has been a very interesting 1 year of dedicated research I have put in towards this goal.

I wanted to give the regular readers a look at the vital statistics and numbers of how this website has been doing so far over this 1 entire year. (click the pic to get the larger size)

traffic stats

The tracking software that I use is called Clicky, not Google Analytics. Google Analytics does not give the real-time numbers that Clicky can do. The numbers from the two sources are slightly off too.

The daily number of visitors is around 1000-1400 on average. There was two times when a story or post was picked up and taken virally so the website numbers spiked up. They were both about the former Tanya Angus who suffered an extremely back version of acromegaly which made her almost 7 feet tall. The traffic has grown steadily over time, but has sort of plateaued in the last 4 months around the 1000 total visitors/day mark.

There has been 961 posts written with another 26 posts that is in private waiting to be finished and published.

So far the Natural Height Growth Facebook Page has been “liked” 67 times.

The number of people on the email mailing list which I use AWeber is around 334 People with another 36 people who decided to unsubscribe.

From using the podcast service Libsyn, I have produce only 10 podcast episodes with a total of 1647 total downloads of the episodes. The most listened to episodes were probably on Episode #5 with Hakker.

I created the website months ago but decided not to fully implement all of the forum features since I did not want to shoulder the responsibility of also running a forum website. It was taken down now and no longer active.

There has been a few posts that has been much bigger than others, some which showed that researchers and scientists are working on the subject of height research to see which genes, mRNA, and signaling pathways affect the overall growth and height in humans.

Refer to post

Hundreds Of Variants Clustered In Genomic Loci And Biological Pathways Affect Human Height (BREAKTHROUGH)

Important Posts

This recent post I wrote showed that scientists have been successful in growing completely new growth plates, with the bones and cartilage with the right type of cartilage sections needed to make volumetric expansion of bone tissue possible.

My Plans For The Upcoming Year

I feel like the posts are getting stronger, and the amount of knowledge on how the body really works is increasing. Some posts I have written like…

  1. The PI3K, AKT And mTOR Signaling Pathway
  2. The Connection Between The Wnt Beta Catenin Signaling Pathway And Growth, Part I

might be a little too technical for most researchers who just want to know what the steps are. The truth is that the website will be going much deeper into the science, molecular biology, and genetics in the future because I realize that we have to. Most of the easy stuff has already been thought of and tried. It doesn’t take a genius to see that orally ingesting letrozole might delay growth plate closure.

So this website is only going to get more technical as I shift more towards genetics and looking at the effect mRNA and the microRNA has towards mitosis of progenitor stem cells.

Ideas I would go deeper into

I wanted to look more at ways to de-ossify the bones and remove the calcium crystals that make bone tissue so tough to bend or pull. The idea of using vinegar to make bones more rubberized is very interesting. Refer to post “Using Acids To Induce Reverse Ossification For Calcium Mineral Absorption”

Current methods on how physicians and surgeons do surgery, specifically look at noninvasive approaches, like an incredible new technique known as magnetic resonance (MR)-guided high-intensity focused ultrasound (tcMRgHIFU). Refer to study “High-intensity focused ultrasound for noninvasive functional neurosurgery.

Stem Cell Research – This one area is probably the most promising of all the possible paths to take. I wrote about the idea of using stem cells to grow taller. The possible is actually very high that something will be found in less than 20 years.

The best combination of growth factor mixture that would lead to the highest chondrogenic potential in terms of differentiation and proliferation.

Increase Height And Grow Taller Slightly By Taking Pentosan Polysulfate Orally, Part II

Going right behind the first post about the possibility of using Sodium Pento Polysulfate aka Pento entitled “Increase Height And Grow Taller Using Sodium Pentosan Polysulfate AKA Pentosan” is this 2nd post where I wanted to go back to the idea of using a Pentosan derivative or variation to cause degraded articular cartilage to regain some of the thickness back leading to a slight height increase of maybe 1-2 mms.

Let’s look at the study “The effects of orally administered calcium pentosan polysulfate on inflammation and cartilage degradation produced in rabbit joints by intraarticular injection of a hyaluronate-polylysine complex.”

The study is rather simple. The researchers first use a combination of “a preformed polycation complex (PC) of poly-D-lysine and hyaluronan” to be injected into the synovial joint cavity of the lab animal to make that synovial joint gap stimulating inflammation of the overall joint. A normal saline solution was injected into the other same joint on the other side of the body to be used as a control.

Later the rabbit was fed the pentosan polysulfate and the results were that the Interleukin-6 concentrations were decreased. The researchers would conclude… “…preserve cartilage PGs in inflamed rabbit joints suggests that this substance could be of value as an effective orally administered chondroprotective, antiarthritic drug”

This compound can definitely protect the chondrocytes and cartilage layers, and decrease the symptoms of arthritis, by keeping the cartilage thickness intact for much longer. I suspect that it would lead to a slight increase in height in adults from this factor.

Something else before we continue…

imgresThe medical procedure of an Intra-Articular Injection needs to be looked at much more since it is a new clinical or medical method which I have not known before, or at least did not know the actual term of the process. For more information about Intra-Articular Injections, click on this study HERE written from the medical journal Anesthesiology Clinics.

This would be something which I think is viable for a really good alternative to invasive surgery for height increase if we can get the articular cartilage to start to behave like the growth plate cartilage.

A New Database And Resource To Use – Clinical Trials Government Based Website (Important)

I was looking for more information about the connection between height increase and stem cell research when someone linked to a website which I found would make an excellent new resource I and fellow height increase researchers can use to see just what the major organizations, institutions, corporations, and possibly even military researchers are doing. The government website Clinical Trials may turn out to be an even bigger resource to find potential new techniques, ideas, and treatments than even from Google Patents, Google Scholar, or PubMed.

From the Clinical Trials Website…

ClinicalTrials.Gov – A service of the U.S. National Institutes of Health is a registry and results database of publicly and privately supported clinical studies of human participants conducted around the world.

Some terms I would want to look through are…

  • Longitudinal growth
  • Growth Plate
  • Epiphyseal
  • Physeal
  • Short Statured
  • Tall Statured
  • Gigantism & acromegaly
  • growth hormone
  • bone morphogenetic protein
  • increased longitudinal growth

I will be putting this website along the top of my resources and website list to look for relevant information, just like Google Scholar, Google Patents, & Pubmed.

Stem Cells Implanted Into Bone For 12 Inches Of Height At A Clinic In China With South Korean Machine

Background On Sam Snyder

I contacted Sam in the early months of the the website’s development to ask about his own opinion on Tyler’s blog and what he felt was the direction of potential height increase research. Of all the bloggers in the internet who has ever done any type of extensive, serious review on Tyler’s website, it has been Sam Snyder, who talked about the research we might see in the decades ahead on what might be created biomedically for use. I have mentioned Sam’s name in a few past previous posts.

Something I found today which is really interesting is that the blogger Sam Snyder, who I have actually contacted in the past wrote a post back in July of 2011 which suggests that someone he knew was offer a chance to get their height increased by 30 cms from getting stem cells injected into their bones using a machine from South Korea and at a clinic in China.

Growing Taller with Stem Cells in the Future

Posted on July 15, 2011

Several months ago I wrote a post titled Stem Cells for Height, which outlined the possibility of someday increasing height through advances in biotechnology. I was recently contacted by someone who was offered the opportunity to increase their height by having stem cells injected into their bones at a clinic in China using a machine from South Korea. The procedure promised a height increase of up to 30 cm in adults! It would be nice if this technique worked, but I remain skeptical. The last time I checked, the website for this clinic had gone offline, so maybe it’s too good to true.

Articles like this are why I’m fairly skeptical of stem cell treatments that aren’t FDA-approved:

• Health Experts Warn of ‘stem cell tourism’ dangers

Regenerative medicine researchers say that patients could lose their money and have no recourse to get a refund. Patients might even get cancer from unrestrained stem cells. There still may be the possibility that stem cell clinics in China will develop successful treatments while American stem cell research proceeds at a slower pace due to FDA regulations. I’m not really sure what the right answer is. The regenerative medicine professors are skeptical of places like Beike Biotech, but that company seems to be conducting legitimate research (though admittedly I haven’t read their published papers):

• Beike Biotech Featured Publications

Legitimate stem cell therapies are still a major component of the future of medicine. Two major companies in America that are conducting clinical trials of stem cells are Geron and Advanced Cell Technology. Geron is conducting a trial of stem cells to heal spinal damage and Advanced Cell Technology is conducting experiments using stem cells to treat eye problems like macular degeneration. Bone marrow stem cells are also used to treat cancer. I know that other researchers are working on creating stem cell treatments to heal the heart muscle. Researchers have also successfully used tissue engineering to create new bladders and tracheas for patients. Anthony Atala of Wake Forest University has grown a kidney using tissue printing, but printed kidneys are still years away from being given to human patients.

Mesenchymal stem cells are also being used for bone healing in experiments, though I haven’t heard anything about being able to use them for the purposes of increasing height. Here’s a story about accelerating the healing of injured bones:

• Bone Growth Accelerated with Nanotubes and Stem Cells

Thousands of clinical trials using stem cells are being conducted or have been conducted. This is a list of clinical trials in the USA that are testing stem cell treatments:

• Stem cell clinical trial search results on

As for increasing height using stem cells, I wish it was true. There are legitimate stem cell treatments out there, but unfortunately I’m not familiar with any that can increase adult height.

Updated 4/21/2013

The post he referenced at the beginning of the post was written in March of 2011

Stem Cells for Height

Posted on March 29, 2011
I recently read a demoralizing answer to a question in the following thread on Quora:

The top answer comes from a man who is barely five feet tall and experienced many setbacks in life. A growing body of research indicates that taller men have better lives on average. They have:

  • better career prospects
  • more frequent opportunities for romance
  • increased intelligence
  • happier mood
  • longer lifespan

Harvard economics professor Grew Mankiw, who himself is over six feet tall, wrote a semi-serious paper arguing in favor of a height tax. If economists truly believe in taxation that redistributes wealth to people who have poorer circumstances in life, that means they should examine the possibility of tax increases on tall men – or at least tax breaks for shorter men. The height tax is a politically untenable topic and is probably unnecessary in the long run, but evidence tends to suggest tall people have better lives.

Most people who provided counsel to the Quora respondent focused on short-term solutions (moving to a place with a population that has a lower than average human height) or long-term solutions (waiting for a technological singularity and then uploading the brain into a better body). Controversial limb-lengthening surgery also exists for the purposes of increasing height. The downsides are its expensive cost, the long recovery process, and the unimpressive results.

Stem cells are a promising medium-term solution. Stem cells could restore the body’s bones and muscles to a youthful state and allow for their expansion in a growth phase. They could also turn back the clock on the pituitary gland and cause it to produce excess growth hormone. This would be a delicate process to deliver the benefits of height without causing the health complications associated with gigantism and acromegaly.

Developed countries have lots of regulations on stem cell treatments and for good reason. They want to prevent people from wasting their money on scams or getting cancer from untested therapies. The good news is that some developing countries (especially in Southeast Asia) have fewer moral, ethical, and regulatory barriers to researching stem cell treatments. A country like China that has an excess of males who want to increase their mating prospects is prime territory for the development of height-increasing stem cell therapies. – Updated 11/27/2011

Personal Opinion

It is interesting that Sam mentions the company Shenzhen Beike Biotechnology Company because a source I found which discusses the issue over the ethics and moral implications of using stem cells is brought up in a journal by Boston College entitled “Ethical Concerns in the Emergence of Stem Cell Therapies by Benjamin Schanker

“…There may eventually come a day when organs or limbs can be manufactured, neuronal growth stimulated, or bone growth and height increased using stem cells. These further advances will certainly raise questions around issues of what it means to be a human being…”

This guy also states the possibility that maybe one day stem cell technology will allow people to increase their height.

The thing about this post is that Sam Snyder is claiming that there is some device in a clinic in China which was made or manufactured somewhere in South Korea which can implant stem cells into the bones of a person leading them to become upwards of even 12 inches taller.

I would love to hear from Sam to see who this person he knows is and whether that is any real evidence that this device exists somewhere.

I am in South Korea myself and plan to take a trip to China sometime soon so maybe I can do more research and find this actual device.