Acromegaly is a health condition that could have very little effect on life insurance.
Or it can make it impossible to get.
It all depends on how far the disease has progressed. Getting life insurance with acromegaly has a lot to do with timing, as well as with how well you maintain your overall health.
It’s a fairly rare condition, which means that it also requires the skill of an experienced insurance professional. Matching you with the right insurance company can make all the difference.
What is Acromegaly?
Acromegaly is a condition in which your body makes too much growth hormone making parts of your body grow too much. This includes your hands, feet, and face. It could also affect your bones and your heart.
It is most common with people in middle age. Symptoms can take years before being noticed. Acromegaly is not to be confused with gigantism in children.
The most common cause is a benign tumor in your pituitary gland. It causes your body to make too much growth hormone. Another cause is tumors in the pancreas, liver or the brain. That results in higher levels of insulin-like growth hormone that causes visible symptoms.
Swelling in the hands and feet are the first symptoms. It may be difficult to fit into your shoes, or to get a ring on your finger. As the condition progresses, lips, nose and tongue become noticeably larger. Spaces can develop in your teeth, and your brow and lower jaw protrude.
More threatening conditions can include arthritis, pinched nerves, hypertension, heart disease, fatigue, carpal tunnel syndrome, vision problems and sexual impairment.
The condition is diagnosed through blood tests that measure growth hormone levels. That will require a series of blood tests. You may also have x-rays, CT scans or MRIs to determine the size and location of the tumor.
Treatment options include surgery, medication, and radiation. Surgery will be performed to remove large tumors. Improvement often comes in a matter of days. Medication is prescribed to bring growth hormones down to normal levels. Radiation is used if any part of a tumor is left after surgery.
How Life Insurance Companies View Acromegaly
You can get life insurance with acromegaly.
Early detection with successful treatment can lead to approval with a preferred rating. If you develop an enlarged heart or hypertension you will be eligible for a medium substandard classification. Your application will be declined under a worst-case scenario.
Heart disease or kidney failure occur in advanced cases. You can still be approved with a severe substandard rating. This will result in a higher premium, but you’ll still be able to get life insurance.
The insurance company will want to know the following:
- When was the condition diagnosed?
- Therapies that have been used to treat it?
- How successful were those therapies?
- Has there been any recurrence of acromegaly symptoms since the last treatment?
- Are you taking any maintenance medications related to the condition?
- Do you follow up regularly with an endocrinologist?
- Do you have any other health conditions?
Since acromegaly can produce severe health conditions, the insurance company will be particularly concerned with the last question. With early detection and aggressive treatment, severe health conditions can be avoided. But if it progresses to the point where major illnesses develop, the outcome can change.
Still another area of concern is your employment status. The insurance company wants to know if you are currently employed and if you have had to apply for disability benefits in the recent past. This is to determine whether or not acromegaly has affected your life in a significant way.
Getting Life Insurance with Acromegaly
If you have acromegaly, it’s important to have it diagnosed and treated as soon as possible. Early on, the symptoms are mild and reversible. But if left untreated, it can lead to chronic health conditions that can make getting life insurance impossible.
Anytime you have any type of health condition, you must be especially conscientious about your overall level of health. Factors that you can control include:
- Maintaining proper weight
- Eating a balanced diet
- Getting regular exercise
- If you smoke, stop
- Limit alcohol consumption
- Maintain a safe driving history
- Keep a good credit rating
- Minimize stress in your life
- Get regular checkups with your doctor or any necessary specialists
- Be conscientious about taking any required medications
However, there are factors that are completely beyond your control. One is your family’s health history. Even if you are otherwise healthy, insurance companies will still be concerned with the health of your parents, siblings, and even grandparents. That’s how they determine the likelihood of genetic health influences.
Since you can’t control your family health history, it’s very important to stay on top of your own personal health.
The Importance of Working with an Independent Insurance Broker
Acromegaly requires that you match with an insurance company that is receptive to the condition.
Unless you work in the insurance industry, it will be very difficult to make that determination. But it will have a material effect on the outcome of your insurance application.
If you apply with a company that takes a negative view of acromegaly, your application can be denied. Others may approve the policy, but issue a substandard rating that will result in a very expensive premium.
The goal must be to find an insurance company that has the most favorable view of acromegaly.
At Simple Life Insure, we specialize in working with people who have higher risk. We work with many different life insurance companies. We’re able to work with the companies that are the best fit for people with serious conditions, including acromegaly. And we can narrow it down to a shortlist of providers, then do pre-applications to determine who is most receptive. That will give the best indication of both an approval and a low premium.
If you have acromegaly – or any other health condition – let us help you get the insurance policy that you need and want. Give us a call, or complete the quote request to the left of this article. We’ll work for you, not the insurance companies!