Klinefelter syndrome

Klinefelter syndrome is a syndrome that is only prone to males. Males that have this syndrome have an extra X chromosome in almost of all of their cells. Therefore instead of having a normal XY chromosome like typical men, they have a XXY chromosome. It is also known by a simpler name, XXY condition.

A person with this syndrome usually develops an introvert characteristic as they are reaching puberty. They usually are taller than normal teenagers, bigger hips, spares facial and pubic hair, weaker muscles, and enlarged breast muscle (gynecomastia) but ultimately it affects the sperm production and the male testosterones.


Klinefelter syndromes occur through a process called nondisjunction. Nondisjunction occurs only when a pair of sex chromosome failed to split while during the process of formation of an egg (sperm). If such error were to happen, while the egg is combining with the sperm cells it is bound to have a XXY chromosome which will be copied throughout every body cells of the baby.

A normal 46 XY chromosome A 47 XXY chromosome

People having this syndrome have limitations, but they differ as they grew older. While they are babies, they usually have weak muscles, longer time to learn to walk or crawl, slow development to talk, and subtle personality. For teenagers, they have less stamina and weaker bones, late puberty, problems with reading, writing and math, shorter attention span, and still have a subtle personality. For men, they are infertility to be unable to father a child. With the limitations it also can lead to higher risk diseases such lung diseases, osteoporosis, varicose veins, breast cancer, attention deficient hyperactivity disorder, dyslexia, germ cell tumor, taurodontism and autoimmune disorders; lupus, rheumatoid arthritis and Sjorgren's syndrome.

People with Klinefelter syndrome may have hard time to fit in the society especially during their adolescent stage, because of their subtle characteristic. In addition, they might feel insecure of having gynecomastia, physique or even their educational history, which could make them feel inferior or abnormal.

However in certain cultures, such as Kathoeys and Fa'afafine. they have different perspectives of people with Klinefelter syndrome. The Kathoeys is a group of people in Thailand which can also be called as “ladyboys”. In Kathoey's culture they are accepted and seem as males with mistaken minds, women born into the wrong body, third gender, or “kind of man, kind of woman”. For example the famous Muay Thai boxing champion, Nong Tum who is a kathoey and wears makeup and have a long hair. The Fa'afafine is a group of people in Samoa which literally means “in the manner of women”. Fa'afafine are male biologically or males with Klinefelter syndrome, which are later chosen due to their distinguish feminine nature to continue their life with female roles. These roles are fully encouraged in their tradition. They are well known for their hard work and dedication to the family in the Samoan society. They also valued especially for their masculine might with feminine characteristic of caring and good housekeeping.