June 10th through 16th is Men Health’s/Rare Dads Week!
We would like to devote some attention to the rare diseases that affect mostly men – because to quote Congressman Bill Richardson :
“Recognizing and preventing men’s health problems is not just a man’s issue. Because of its impact on wives, mothers, daughters, and sisters, men’s health is truly a family issue.”
So while it’s absolutely important for men this week to pay attention to all health matters – common and rare alike – we wanted to shine a spotlight on some often-overlooked or downright unheard-of rare diseases that affect men.
So take a read and then pass along to those who could benefit from this info!
Brugada syndrome is a heart rhythm disorder, increasing the risk of abnormal heart rhythms from the lower chambers of the heart.
What are Brugada Syndrome symptoms?
Many people – mostly men – with Brugada syndrome are undiagnosed because the condition often doesn’t cause any noticeable symptoms.
A cornerstone abnormality — called a type 1 Brugada ECG pattern — is detected by an ECG test. However, it is possible to have a Brugada sign or pattern, without having Brugada syndrome.
Other signs and symptoms that could mean you have Brugada syndrome include:
- Fainting (syncope)
- Gasping, labored breathing, particularly at night
- Irregular heartbeats or palpitations
- Extremely fast and chaotic heartbeat (sudden cardiac arrest)
Testicular cancer occurs in the testicles, which are two glands located inside the scrotum.
There are two main kinds of testicular tumors: seminomas and non-seminomas:
- Seminomas appear more often in older men.
- Non-seminomas tend to develop earlier in life. They also grow and spread quicker than seminomas do.
Testicular cancer is rare, but is still the most common type of cancer to appear in men between ages 15 and 35. There are some risk factors that can increase your chance of getting testicular cancer, including: having had an undescended testicle, abnormal development of the testicles, a family history of testicular cancer, and a personal history of testicular cancer.
Some research also indicates that white males are more likely to get testicular cancer than non-white males.
What are testicular cancer symptoms?
Signs and symptoms of testicular cancer include:
- A lump or enlargement in either testicle
- A feeling of heaviness in the scrotum
- A dull ache in the abdomen or groin
- A sudden collection of fluid in the scrotum
- Pain or discomfort in a testicle or the scrotum
- Enlargement or tenderness of the breasts
- Back pain
Klinefelter syndrome is a genetic condition that results when a boy is born with an extra copy of the X chromosome. Klinefelter syndrome may adversely affect testicular growth, resulting in smaller than normal testicles, which can lead to lower production of testosterone.
The syndrome may also cause reduced muscle mass, reduced body and facial hair, and enlarged breast tissue. The effects of Klinefelter syndrome vary, and not everyone has the same signs and symptoms.
What are Klinefelter Syndrome symptoms?
Signs and symptoms of Klinefelter syndrome also vary by age:
- Weak muscles
- Slow motor development — taking longer than average to sit up, crawl and walk
- Delay in speaking
- Quiet, docile personality
- Problems at birth, such as testicles that haven’t descended into the scrotum
Boys and teenagers:
- Taller than average stature
- Longer legs, shorter torso and broader hips compared with other boys
- Absent, delayed or incomplete puberty
- After puberty, less muscle and less facial and body hair compared with other teens
- Small, firm testicles
- Small penis
- Enlarged breast tissue (gynecomastia)
- Weak bones
- Low energy levels
- Tendency to be shy and sensitive
- Difficulty expressing thoughts and feelings or socializing
- Problems with reading, writing, spelling or math
- Low sperm count or no sperm
- Small testicles and penis
- Low sex drive
- Taller than average height
- Weak bones
- Decreased facial and body hair
- Less muscular than normal
- Enlarged breast tissue
- Increased belly fat