Turner Up!

February is Turner Syndrome Awareness Month-so let’s spread the news about Turner Syndrome!

Despite Turner Syndrome affecting every 2,000 to 2,500 female births each year, not many people know about the condition. So, since February is Turner Syndrome Awareness Month, let’s spread the awareness of Turner Syndrome! According to Turner Syndrome Society of the United States, there are over 71,000 women and girls living with TS across the United States. The website also estimates that only about 1% of fetuses with one X-chromosome survive to birth, and that approximately 10% of all miscarriages are due to Turner Syndrome. Those are pretty startling statistics if you really think about it.

The condition is caused when a female, instead of getting two X-chromosomes, receives one or one and part of the second X-chromosome. When this occurs, the “turner girl” is short- averaging 4’4’’ to 4’8.’’

Other affects from this condition are a webbed neck, heart problems, kidney problems and hypothyroidism. Not all girls develop these problems, but it does often happen with this condition. Girls are diagnosed by a blood test, with a karyotype to show the X-chromosome usually at birth, early in age or when the girl is supposed to be going through puberty.

The condition is not genetic, and it just happens during the development of the baby. Most girls actually may not know that they have Turner Syndrome because they just figure that they are short, nothing more. Now that you know more about Turner Syndrome, share the information and spread the awareness about Turner Syndrome!

Frequently Asked Questions:

How Tall Are You?: 4’6’’

How Old Are You?: 19

Do You Like Being Short?: No, and especially as I get older. It is difficult having a few people staring at you and not knowing if they are judging or trying to figure you out-such as age. It is also becoming more annoying asking people for help to reach something. I am very independent, so I don’t like asking for help and needing it. Some people treat me like a little kid still too, which I think I’m so used to it out in public, that I don’t really know how bad it is. And, I’ve just always been treated a little differently, so it just sort of comes with the territory. I have these moments though, and then the other ninety percent of the time, it doesn’t even phase me that I am so short…until I see a picture of me and someone else, and then I’m like “dear God, am I short!” But, I know I was made this way for a reason, so I try and let it not get to me too much. Plus, too many other awesome things are happening in my life to worry about my height!

Would You Want To Be Taller If You Were Able To?: Nope. It has made me who I am and has really taught me about people and life. But then…if I was just 5’, that would be pretty great as well!

What Has Being Short Taught You?: 1. Don’t be cocky…people don’t like cocky people. 2. Have fun in life 3. You have to laugh at yourself too…if you can’t laugh at yourself and your quirkiness (yes, everyone is a little quirky), then you’re taking life too seriously. 4. Don’t take life too seriously, you’ll miss out on the little things. 5. DANCE. 6. Everyone has their flaws 7. Nice people are nice 8. Family is always there for you

When Were You Diagnosed With Turner Syndrome?: April 9, 2012. I was seventeen, which it is pretty rare for a girl to be diagnosed with Turner Syndrome that late in life.

Has the Condition Changed Your Life At All?: No, and thankfully I am fortunate enough to not have the heart and kidney problems that most Turner Girls do.

What Did You Think When You Were Diagnosed?: Relieved, to be honest. I finally knew why I was short and actually could grow some possibly. (Which I have grown around 2-inches since I was diagnosed!) We never knew if I was just short or if I did have a condition. I would watch TV shows like “The Little Couple” and “Little People, Big World” and try and figure out all of the similarities. There were many, but I just did not have much of their symptoms of dwarfism. And I was actually too tall, so that was cut out fairly early in my life. It was also really neat learning and researching about Turner’s.

Have You Met Other Girls With Turner Syndrome?: Yes! I was fortunate enough to be able to go to one of the Turner Syndrome events in California. I met about thirty turner girls there, which was a very amazing experience for me! We all became close, so it is a great bond to have.

What Is The Video And Website About? The video is about Cindy, who has Turner Syndrome, and her telling about when she was diagnosed, her husband Paul (who is the best person ever!) and having to go through adoption. Her story about being diagnosed and the reaction to it is a lot like mine, so it means a lot to me. The website (hyperlinked through “Turner Syndrome Society of the United States” at the top of the article) is the TSSUS’ website. There is a lot of good information on the website about Turner Syndrome if you want to learn more!