Montreal Times - - Front Page - By: Jill Clark / mtl­

This Novem­ber 1st will be the first ever Na­tional Acromegaly Aware­ness Day. But what is acromegaly?

Usu­ally, acromegaly de­vel­ops from an ex­cess growth hor­mone. In some, it’s sig­nalled by an en­large­ment in the hands and feet. In others, it’s in­vis­i­ble— aside from the ad­verse and life-al­ter­ing side ef­fects in­clud­ing ex­treme fa­tigue, brain fog, joint pain, and vi­sion prob­lems. Santino Ma­trun­dola, owner and pho­tog­ra­pher of Fu­sion Pho­tog­ra­phy, ex­pe­ri­enced the in­vis­i­ble later ef­fects of the dis­ease.

In March 2014, Santino vis­ited the doc­tor with ex­treme daily mi­graines. He was sent away with an­tibi­otics to treat a si­nus in­fec­tion. How­ever, he knew it wasn’t a si­nus in­fec­tion when he mo­men­tar­ily lost vi­sion in one eye while pho­tograph­ing an event a few weeks later. He went through emer­gency surgery to re­move an in­va­sive tu­mour in his pi­tu­itary gland. It was the cul­prit of his headaches and vi­sion loss, press­ing on nearby brain tis­sue. Santino was di­ag­nosed with acromegaly.

As one of the con­stants through­out his strug­gle, his pho­tog­ra­phy mo­ti­vates him to find the pos­i­tiv­ity in his chaos. “Pho­tog­ra­phy helps me on a daily ba­sis,” he says. His pho­tog­ra­phy busi­ness brings him even more joy than be­fore. Now he uses pho­tog­ra­phy to change the way others see them­selves, as well as the way he sees him­self.

Santino Ma­trun­dola tak­ing a selfie at work

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