A Theory That Epiphyseal Growth Plates Never Fuse For Certain People

Someone recently gave a very interesting comment on one of my older posts, entitled “The 28 Year Old Woman Who Was Still Growing”, named Dee

This is her message to me on that post…

I am a 39 year old female and have yet to stop growing however my growth is slow. I gained an inch in my 20s and an other so far in my 30s. At my last measurement I stood at 5’8″. I recently had a bad fall and had X-rays taken. The dr (who is not my regular dr) made the comment that he found it odd that my growth plate in my tibia hadn’t fused. I am fine with growing as an adult as long as it stays slow and even on both sides. :-)

My Personal Analysis

The range and scope of this website is large, and emcompasses multiple topic and subject, but they all have one connecting theme, which is over human height. Some things like my Body Hack series or the Mind Hack Series were just really interesting stuff I had learned over the years which had nothing to do with the overall theme.

Because this website does reach so many people even in a single day, there have been multiple people who have commented on the 1000+ posts and I use their comments and stories as clues to see whether there are unique cases and people with abnormal growth patterns which might help lead us to a break through.

The woman’s comment made me remember back in reading stories of mainly women who noticed that they have grown taller in their 30s, or even 40s from taking normal supplements, pregnancy, abnormal pituitary adenomas, etc.

This story is probably the most extreme of all. She claims that her epiphyseal growth plate never fused. She found out about this strange quirk about her body after getting sustaining a fall and then going to the radiologist and getting an X-ray to check that there are no serious fractures in her bones as a result of the fall.

After examination it turns out that her tibial growth plates never fused, on both legs. This now goes directly against everything we have ever learned about how the life progression of these cartilage tissues are supposed to work. One of the basic axioms on what we have been doing research on have been violated.

Which means that we have to rethink some of our deepest, most basic assumptions on growth. This is why I am going to propose the theory right now that for some people, mostly women, their growth plates never completely fuse, but they are not aware of it.

My Proposed Theory: The epiphyseal growth plates never fuse for some people, which make up a very small minority of people in the overall human population of 7 billion.

If we really took a step back and thought about it, it sort of makes sense. Out of the total of 7 billion people in the world, there are bound to be some people with very unique physiological traits and special bodies.

I would like to refer to very unique cases which can happen to the human body.

How about people with extra set of teeth?

The old Vietnamese man, Mr. Nguyen Van Phuc,  with a third set of teeth – The Chinese Man with 3 sets of teeth, 1 more set of teeth than what normal people should have or the British Boy with 3 sets of teeth

(I can personally tell people that I found out that I had an extra 6 teeth in my mouth after I got all of my wisdom teeth removed and my Chinese Oral Surgeon revealed to me after the laughing gas wore off that he had removed not the usual 4 wisdom teeth from my mouth, but an extra 6 teeth which was in my mouth which I was not even aware of until X-Rays showed it being embedded in the tissue next to the mandibular bone. He gave me a small medicine bottle with 10 teeth extracted. True story of my own life)

What about people with horns growing out of their bodies and heads?

The 7 People with horns growing out of their heads 

  • Horn Growing Out of the headHuang Yuanfan – 3 Inch long horn growing from the back of the head
  • Zhang Ruifang – Has two horns, one of them being 2 1/2 inches long
  • Ma Zhong Nan – 4 inch long horn growing from the head
  • Xiou Ling – 6 1/2 inch swirling horn down the head
  • Zhang Yuncai – 2 inch long horn
  • Zheng Zhou
  • Granny Zhao – has a horn growing out of her head
  • Saleh Talib Saleh – The horn is claimed to have reached a length of 19 inches before breaking off. Then it started to grow again.
  • Abdul Razak – 

The picture on the right is of Ma Zhong Nan

What about a girl with one body and two heads?

We find out that Abigail Hensel and Brittany Hensel are just that (Here is their Wikipedia article). They even had their own reality TV Show Abby & Britanny

How about people with 6 fingers in each hand?

Former Bond Girl Gemma Arterton reveals that she was born with 12 fingers instead of the usual 10 here. Plus, one of my uncles was born with the same conditions, with extra fingers in each of his hands. The condition is generally known as polydactyly

So Is there anyone who seems to stay young and does not grow old?

There is Gabby Williams and Brooke Greenberg

How about people with three arms?

There is the chinese baby Liu Junjie

How about 8 feet tall individuals with hypertrophic cephalic parts?

I present the interesting case of Siah Khan, a 8 feet tall Iranian man who lived in the 19th century. His condition caused his eyebrow ridge to be extremely overgrown and his entire body to be enlarged. I did a scientific analysis on this amazing person in the older post Medical Analysis On A 8 Feet Tall Iranian Giant, Siah Khan

These are all very unusual people with unique bodies. What some of them have most of us would say is impossible. All of the standard medical conditions that are taught in the first two years of medical school to medical students are for people who have normal bodies. The physiology of people who are in the middle of the distribution curve are what the textbooks are used to describe.

This is why I believe that for some people, probably mostly women, there are quite a few whose growth plates never fused, but it is just that they never got an X-Ray to make sure that it was gone.

Point #1 – You can not see your growth plates normally, like seeing the skin . All the cartilage tissue is covered. You need an X-Ray to check whether the growth plates are closed or not. This is why most people just assume that their growth plates are gone. And they are right.

Point #2 – Most people don’t just go to the hospital or radiologist just to check that they still have growth plate cartilage left for no good reason. For people who have never been injured, they never stop by the hospital ever or get an X-ray so they never find out.

Point #3 – This condition is going to be very rare, probably affecting just 1 out of 10,000-100,000 adult people. For those people, they think that they have finished growing since the changes in height from long bone longitudinal growth is just too small to notice from day-by day interactions. They just assume that they are done and stop caring. This would explain why there have been around a dozen reported cases by young women who have said that they grew taller from pregnancy. Pregnancy causes a whole different set of hormones going through the female body which it normally doesn’t deal with. The pregnancy period caused the last bit of cartilage that was never fused to interact with the estrogen or estrogen-like hormones which cause the final closure of the epiphyseal plates. The individual female’s body who is going through its first pregnancy would be effected by height changes more likely than subsequent pregnancies.

Point #4 – It turns out that one of the major factors that determine whether the growth plates will continue to experience longitudinal growth and stay around the same width is the amount of weight or load on top of the cartilage. This would explain why women seem to get this more than men. Women on average weight less than men, so there is less load on their growth plates, so they are not fused as quickly, if at all.

I conclude with this idea to make people think a little more. Can we really assume that for all 7 billion people in the world, when we all turn 25, every single one of us have lost the epiphyseal cartilage?

Of course not, since most of the serious height increase researchers like me, Tyler, and the people who used to run HeightFX have found at least 3 cases from 3 PubMed articles which showed that men who are lacking the estrogen receptor type alpha never have their growth plates closed even past the age of 30 and continue to increase in bone length around 1 inch every 3 years, which is very small, but noticeable. Refer to the posts and articles below…

7 thoughts on “A Theory That Epiphyseal Growth Plates Never Fuse For Certain People

  1. Felipe

    Very interesting post,as you said hypoestrogenism produce later closure of growth plates because they got change on gen CYP19 which involve not change of androgens on estrogen.
    So we can manipulate height in people who got open growth plates via aromatase inhibitor like letrozole or arimidex.

  2. Alyssa

    I recently had x-rays taken after a bad fall, and discovered my growth plates are still open. I asked what the crack going through my bone above my ankle joint was, and the x-ray tech replied that it was just my growth plate. I will be 30 next month, but I continuously get mistaken for early 20’s despite having three children. The x-ray tech didn’t seem to be concerned about my growth plates still being open until I told her how old I am. She left quickly after that, and the doctor never would explain anything. I’m having very little luck finding any information regarding adults with open growth plates. Any insight you could give me would be very helpful.

    1. Crystal

      After an x-ray my chiropractor noted I had growth plated in my spine that hadnt closed. I was 17 at the time and now 31 still growing about 1/8 inch per year, and I too look very young for my age.

  3. Pingback: Another Case Of Pregnancy Causing Woman To Grow Taller And Increase In Height | Natural Height Growth

  4. Josh

    I am about 24 years old and I injured my knee yesterday. After going in to get an xray the doctor pointed out that my growth plates were still very much open. This seems to be a fairly undocumented phenomenon so I thought I’d share.

  5. Sam

    If you are 28, nearly impossible you are still growing *lengthwise* if you’re a women. If you are in your 30’s and you think you’re still growing, you’re delusional. Or you’re on an acid trip. Sorry.

  6. anonymous

    I am a 49-year-old woman and am still getting slowly taller. The doctors I have had over the years have been recording my height during physicals, and I was 5′ 2 3/4″ in my 20s, and my recorded height has gradually increased over the years. It was 5′ 3″ plus in my 30s and got to 5′ 4″ when I was about 40. Earlier this year, I was measured as 5′ 5″ at my physical.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *