Adam Rainer the Dwarf Giant

Adam Rainer the Dwarf Giant

Yes, you did read the title to this particular article correctly – we will be taking a look at Adam Rainer the dwarf giant!

Most people grow to an average standard height, but sometimes there are exceptions to the rule. Take for instance one of my heroes when I was a ten-year-old – wrestler Andre the Giant (who has sadly passed away now).

Actually, the list can go on and on – the guy who played Jaws in the James Bond films, Peter Mayhew who played Chewbacca in Star Wars, etc, etc…

But, what makes Adam Rainer so unique is the fact that the medical world labelled him as both a dwarf and a giant over the course of his life.

Let’s take a closer look…


Adam Rainer was born in Austria in 1899 to parents of average height and build. He also had a step brother who also measured in at an average height.

In 1917 Adam had to take conscription tests for the Austrian army, which resulted in doctors claiming that he was too small and weak to be a soldier (at the time he stood at just four feet six inches).


In 1920 Rainer hit twenty, but his medical records show that he was still extremely small for a male. However, he kept on growing from this point…when most people stop growing!

In the span of several years, Rainer went from four feet ten inches to a massive seven feet one inch.

Doctors really had no idea what was going on, and put the sudden growth down to the effects of a tumour on Rainer’s pituitary gland…but they were not 100% sure about this theory.

Health Problems

Around the 1926 period, Adam started to suffer from some pretty severe health complaints, the worst being a pronounced spinal curvature.

As a kid he had a huge appetite, but during this period he struggled to keep any sort of food down. He also began to lose vision in his right eye, and the hearing in his left ear.

Adam started to suffer from some pretty severe health complaints

Between August 1930 and May 1931, doctors A. Mandl and F. Windholz examined Rainer.

These two celebrated doctors actually managed to locate a tumour on his pituitary gland and Professor O. Hirsch carried out the operation to remove it on the 2nd of December, 1930.

Unfortunately the operation only managed to slow down Rainer’s growth – it didn’t manage to stop it.

The Final Years

Adam Rainer spent the final years of his life stuck in bed, unable to get up and walk about. He finally died in 1950, but there are numerous arguments surrounding his height at the time of his death.

Some records insist that he was just over seven feet ten inches when he finally passed away!

If you have any thoughts or opinions on Adam Rainer the dwarf giant, please leave them in the comment section below.

12 comments on “Adam Rainer the Dwarf Giant

  1. Thanks for this interesting article on Adam Rainer. I had never heard of such a condition as a “dwarf giant”. Really fascinating condition! Do you know of anyone in recent times that has suffered a similar condition? I can only imagine what stress growing at such a rate and at an older age must have put on poor Adam’s body. I imagine the final years of his life must have been really difficult with the health problems he was suffering.

    1. I don’t know of anyone else that has suffered from this John – Rainer is the famous ‘go-to’ case for this sort of thing! 

  2. Wow ! Interesting! The only human proven to be dwarf and giant in his entire life! However, it is sad that this special “gift” has given him so much troubles until affected his own health. 

    I love your website that shares so many interesting stories and paranormal! It gives me a chill wheneverreading it but I just can’t stop reading it!

    Keep it up! 

  3. Hi I have read your article and understood that those people are born with genetic disorder. I have found few people in my local area with same issues. We are not growing as taller as our previous generation. I have two dwarf friends who are only 1.5 inch tall. I have another tall friend who are near about eight feet. I always treat them as a normal person. But sometime some of my friends makes fun and jokes which is painful for me. Thanks for sharing this information.

    1. Hi there…

      I have to ask – you have a friend that is 1.5 inch tall????

      What is he – a snail? 

      Have you maybe got your dimensions mixed up a bit?

  4. Good afternoon Chris,

    You have come up with a story I must say. Adam Rainer, first too small and later too tall. He definitely did not have a nice life. 

    Those Pituitary gland tumors are mostly benign. The question is if this tumor makes excess hormones and also what hormones. In his case, it was obvious as he continued growing. 

    In the 1930s to have a tumor would give approx. 4.7 years to live after diagnose. Nowadays the cure rate for microadenomas is 90% and improving.

    Thank you for this story, it makes me happy I am ” normal “.

    Regards, Taetske

  5. Hey there. Thank you for sharing this amazing story about Adam Rainer. Never heard of his story before, and you got me quite interested in this guy. What makes this story even more incredible is that Adam was a dwarf when growing up and doctors could not imagine that he will reach “normal” height.

    And he end up becoming a giant. Unfortunatelly, with size like this usually comes back and spine problems.

    I appreciate sharing this unusual stories.


  6. Wow, what a story!  To think that he started growing at the age of twenty really boggles my mind.  From what I understand here, the tumor around his pituitary gland would be the culprit of his unexplained growth?  I did a little research and this gland is also called the master gland and is responsible for producing many hormones that travel throughout the body, directing certain processes or stimulating other glands to produce other hormones.

    I had no idea that it was possible to grow past the age of 20, but in his case, that tumor must have been sending mixed signals to the brain and got him to grow what he had missed in his teenage years.

    Imagine growing from a little over 4 feet to over 7 feet tall in a couple of years and at 20 some yeard old!.  It must have been disastrous to him and his health as well!  Unreal!

    Thank you for this very interesting story.  I have always been interested in the unexplained, so, I have bookmarked your website for future visits!

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