Kallmann syndrome (KS) is a condition that is characterized by absent or delayed puberty and an impaired sense of smell. Males with the syndrome may have signs of the condition at birth, like – a smaller than average penis or undescended testes.
In patients with KS, their body does not make sufficient gonadotrophin-releasing hormone. The role of this hormone is to stimulate the ovaries in females and the testicles in males to produce sex hormones.
KS is the most common form of isolated hypogonadotropic hypogonadism.
The syndrome usually has the following clinical manifestations:
- severe malformation or congenital absence of one or both kidneys;
- presence of a small penis in males;
- excessive bone growth;
- failure of testicular development in males;
- bimanual synkinesis;
- erectile dysfunction or decreased libido in males;
- dental defects;
- the absence of a menstrual period in females;
- abnormal ocular movements;
- incomplete development of secondary sexual characteristics in both genders;
- craniofacial anomalies;
- decreased vaginal lubrication in females;
- color blindness;
- a total absence of the sense of smell (anosmia);
- impairment in sensory or motor function of the lower extremities;
- partial impairment of the sense of smell (hyposmia);
- sensorineural hearing loss;
- shortness of breath;
- loss of muscle tone;
- bluish discoloration of the skin called cyanosis.
The underlying cause of KS is the breakdown of the communication between the pituitary glands and the hypothalamus.
Mutations in several genes are linked with KS. These genes include – CHD7, ANOS1, FGF8, PROK2, FGFR1, or PROKR2.
The diagnosis of KS may be suspected with evidence of incomplete sexual maturity and evidence of lack of sexual maturation.
Note – due to lack of sexual development, most cases are diagnosed at the time of puberty.
Hormone replacement is given to both girls and boys. Girls need the female sex hormones progesterone and estrogen. Boys need testosterone, a hormone that lets them grow and develop during puberty.
It is the complete or partial loss of the sense of smell. This loss may be permanent or temporary.
Note – in KS, the sense of smell is either completely absent (anosmia) or diminished (hyposmia).
Here Is A List Of 7 Famous People With Kallmann Syndrome or Anosmia:
#1 Lawrence Koomson
He is a doctor living and working in London who has KS. Koomson has never had bodily hair, has never had acne, and has never had an erection.
According to his healthcare professional, Koomson had the testosterone levels of a 1-year-old and a 4-centimeter penis before he started treatment.
“I feel an outsider, different to everyone else. People take going through puberty for granted; it’s just something that happens. For me, it has just never happened.” – said Lawrence Koomson.
However, when Dr. Bouloux proposed a treatment to boost his testosterone levels in April 2005, this changed, and Lawrence was about to experience puberty.
The treatment consisted of 6 transdermal implants in the buttocks which released 200mg of testosterone. After six months of treatment, Koomson has started to feel sexual attraction, to have erections, and to explore dating possibilities.
#2 William Wordsworth
He was a major English Romantic poet who helped to launch the Romantic Age in English literature with his joint publication Lyrical Ballads.
William Wordsworth had anosmia. Interestingly, he included smell descriptions from time to time in his poems.
#3 Jimmy Scott
He was an American jazz vocalist who had Kallmann syndrome. To prevent his voice from breaking and to preserve his singing ability, Jimmy Scott refused to have testosterone treatment for most of his life. However, KS prevented him from reaching classic puberty.
Scott was known for a strong contralto voice, that is usually only associated with female singers. Jimmy performed at the inaugurations for presidents Bill Clinton and Dwight Eisenhower.
Jimmy Scott was married five times – first, at 20, to a 16-year-old woman he mentioned to his biographer only by the name “Angel.”
Scott died in his sleep at his home in Las Vegas and was buried in Knollwood Cemetery in Mayfield Heights, Ohio.
#4 Bill Pullman
He is an American actor who has starred in the following films:
- 1600 Penn (2012–13);
- Lost Highway (1997);
- Lake Placid (1999);
- Independence Day (1996);
- Casper (1995);
- While You Were Sleeping (1995);
- Sleepless In Seattle (1993);
- The Accidental Tourist (1988);
- Spaceballs (1987);
- Ruthless People (1986).
Bill Pullman lost his sense of smell in his early 20’s.
#5 Brian Brett
He is a Canadian journalist, poet, novelist, and editor who attended Simon Fraser University between 1969 and 1974, studying literature. He has written a 3-part memoir of his life in British Columbia. In his memoirs, Brett describes his struggle with KS, especially the symptoms he experienced, such as loss of sense of smell, problems with puberty, and osteoporosis.
“The current term for conditions like mine is ‘middlesex.’ Though I had a penis, what the medical profession tactlessly calls a micro-phallus, I guess it could have been mistaken for an enlarged clitoris.”
Moreover, he has worked as an editor for a few publishing firms, including the Governor-General’s Award-winning Blackfish Press.
He also won Canada’s Writers’ Trust Non-Fiction Prize in November 2009, for a book that describes a typical day in the life of his farm, called – Trauma Farm: A Rebel History of Rural Life.
Finally, Brian Brett was treated with testosterone. After, he said – “The initial shot was so strong my tiny organ developed an erection which lasted eight days.”
At 20, he weighed 114 pounds and was 5’7″. With testosterone injections, Bret reached 6′ by age 30. He also ballooned to 230 pounds.
#6 Michael Hutchence
He was an Australian actor and musician who was a founding member of rock band INXS from 1977 until November 1997.
Hutchence acted in feature films, like Frankenstein Unbound (1990), Dogs in Space (1986), and Limp (1997). Additionally, Michael recorded solo material that was released posthumously and was a member of the short-lived pop rock group Max Q.
In September 1992, riding his bicycle home from a nightclub in Copenhagen, Michael Hutchence was struck by a car and suffered a fractured skull. After this accident, he lost his sense of smell.
#7 Brian Mulroney
He is a Canadian politician who served as the 18th Prime Minister of Canada. Prior to his political career, Mulroney was a prominent lawyer and businessman in Montreal. Brian Mulroney had lost his sense of smell as a result of a rare blend of Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes mellitus.