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Hemochromatosis tall tales and the HFE gene

Could extra iron in your body help you grow taller? Yes, according to a study cited recently in the New England Journal of Medicine. And taller is better, right? By many accounts it is, bringing greater earning power in many countries (there are a few downsides, so to speak, such as trying to relax in one of today's airline seats).

The tallest people, by country, are the Dutch, followed by the Norwegians, Serbs, and Swedes (if you find this stuff interesting there is a great chart in Wikipedia). The Celts of old, namely the general population of northern Europe several thousand years ago, were notably tall. Julius Caesar wrote that Celts looked with contempt on the short Romans. This fact is noted by the two doctors who carried out recent research on iron overload and height in Switzerland: Increased Height in HFE Hemochromatosis (Pietro E. CippĂ , M.D., Ph.D. and Pierre-Alexandre Krayenbuehl, M.D.).

Their finding? Hereditary hemochromatosis can make you taller. Of course, if you kno…

Hemochromatosis and cinical trials

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If you or a loved one suffers from hereditary hemochromatosis (HH), you may have experienced the widespread frustration that comes with this condition, frustration that you can't get answers, or treatment, or relief from the damage done by iron overload. One non-conventional medical strategy you might consider is clinical trials.

Before you look at how to pursue this option please be advised that it is not for everyone. I think you need a good overall knowledge of human anatomy and biology to navigate this field. Plus some patience: Not all studies will apply to you, for a variety of reasons.
The Clinical Trials Site
A lot of people don't know that the federal government in America tracks clinical trials online. That link will show you current trials around the world that are related to hemochromatosis. Last time I checked there were 40 of them, with 17 in the United States, as shown here:



Here is an example of a trial that is currently recruiting:

ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NC…

Could Randy Travis be suffering from hereditary hemochromatosis?

PLEASE NOTE: This article does not say Randy Travis has hemochromatosis.

As you may know, Randy Travis is a successful American country music singer, songwriter and actor (if you didn't know, check out the Randy Travis page on Wikipedia).

You may also know that Mr. Travis has had some serious health problems of late, notably a stroke and brain surgery after being admitted to hospital in Texas with presumptive cardiomyopathy and congestive heart failure. Naturally, I was saddened to hear of Mr. Travis' health problems, particularly since they are pretty severe for someone who is relatively young (when you get to 6o, as I did recently, then 50-something is relatively young). However, what made me sit up and pay close attention was three pieces of information:

An article I had recently read, about cardiomyopathy and hemochromatosis.
Mention of a family history of heart problems by one of the doctors treating Mr. Travis.
The Wikipedia reference to the fact that Mr. Travis is of Cornish…

Haemochromatosis testing questions: serum iron, ferritin, genes, scales and other basic info

On the website Yahoo! Answers, I recently saw a question about hemochromatois that I thought I could answer. someone had written "Haemochromatosis: told I may have it, does anyone know anything about the testing scale for it?" There was a more specific question:
"the haemochromatosis result was something like 145, thing is the hospital here only run further tests (genetic test according to the nurse) if the result is higher than 170 or something."
I spent about an hour or so writing an answer, only to find that, when I went to post the answer, the question had been closed to further answers. Darn! But then I thought, why not post the answer here, since it seems to come up quite often. So here's what I wrote:
Testing for hemochromatosis (haemochromatosis)
Hemochromatosis is "a disease that results from excessive amounts of iron in the body (iron overload)." That's the definition used by the Iron Disorders Institute, a non-profit group in America that h…

We're back from the hack: We appreciate your patience

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As you may have noticed, most of the pages here at Celtic Curse have been unavailable for a number of days. That's because some thoughtless cyber criminals had attacked the server on which this website is stored and installed their own malicious code. That code was then used to launch attacks on other websites. The attacks came to the attention of the hosting company from which we rent our server. The company disconnected us from the Internet.

Unless you are a thriving enterprise, you are not likely to have access to the extra resources required to cover from something like this. Fortunately, we were able to get the advice of friends and clean up the server, reinstall this site, and bring it back online without losing any information.

At the same time we put some new security measures in place to help prevent this from happening again.

We will try to pay more attention to the site in the future and keep the helpful content coming. Thank you for being patient. (I am reminded that many…

Featured Hemochromatosis Resource: MedlinePlus from NIH

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Hemochromatosis can be a very frustrating condition, not only physically and psychologically, but informationally. Finding useful information about hemochromatosis can be tricky, even with the power of Google and Bing at your disposal. For a start, a lot of stuff is filed under haemochromatosis, which tends to be the UK/EU spelling.

So, from time to time here on Celtic Curse we will be highlighting hemochromatosis sources that we think are particularly helpful. The first of these is from MedlinePlus from NIH.  A service of the U.S. National Library of Medicine at the National Institutes of Health.

This page has links that cover the basics through to research and some cool tools. We have direct links to the sections here:

Basics

Overviews
Diagnosis/Symptoms
Treatment


Learn More

Related Issues


Multimedia & Cool Tools

Tutorials


Research





Clinical Trials
Genetics
Journal Articles