Gynecomastia – Treatment Overview

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gynecomastiaGynecomastia (or “man boobs”) is a condition affecting some men in which the male breast enlarges to resemble an underdeveloped female breast.

Its important to know that male breast enlargement is not permanent and is surgically treatable. It commonly occurs in three age groups – Infants, Pubertal (Adolescent) & Elderly.

This article briefly discusses the surgical treatment for male breast reduction, causes, symptoms, possible non-surgical alternative treatments, costs involved, candidacy and post-op recovery.

Introduction

Although many factors have been attributed to male breast enlargement, no specific treatable cause has been identified. However the most accepted theory is that the enlargement is due to an increases level of oestrogen in the body.

This may be due to lowered testosterone effect or peripheral conversion of testosterone to oestrogen. Few medical condition and drugs may precipitate a similar environment resulting in male breast enlargement.

Surgery is the Gold Standard treatment for correction of an enlarged male breast. Medication to reduce oestrogen levels have been tried without much success. “Lipoplasty” has been accepted as the standard procedure in correcting Gynecomastia with consistent satisfactory result.

Lipoplasty includes a combination of Liposuction with excision of remaining fibrous glandular tissue. New cannulas with sharper edges have allowed surgeons to correct Gynecomastia with Liposuction alone. This is beneficial in patients with skin excess where a sub-dermal liposuction could significantly help in skin contraction. The procedure is performed under General Anaesthesia and patient is discharged home the same evening.

male breast reduction

Gynecomastia before and after

Liposuction alone could be performed with two key holes on either side while excision requires a semi- circular incision at the junction of Areola with the skin. Tolerable pain is experienced for a week with bruising and numbness lasting for three to four weeks. Patient could return to work in a week’s time and if only suction was done routine work could be resumed after four days. Pain on lifting heavy weight and vigorous exercise could be experienced up to two months.

Surgical correction is warranted only if a person feels embarrassed about his physical appearance. Enlarged male breast does not pose a significant increased risk for cancer. Diet and exercise may help to reduce fat content but the fibrous glandular component and skin excess could only be corrected surgically.


In this article



What is Gynecomastia?

Gynecomastia happens when breast tissue in men or boys is overdeveloped. It tends to give a feminine look and boys and men who suffer from this surprisingly-common health condition usually have hormone imbalances which cause the dreaded “man boobs” look. 

Most common in boys who are going through puberty or men who are older, Gynecomastia happens due to normal fluctuations in hormone levels. There are other causes sometimes but hormone changes are definitely the most common reason why the disorder happens.

In general, this condition isn’t serious from a health standpoint. It’s more of a cosmetic problem for most. However, it may trigger some serious psychological turmoil, as most men and boys do not want a feminine look. They may feel a range of negative emotions when they think about their overdeveloped breast tissue.

At times, this disorder will go away on its own. If it doesn’t, there are prescription drugs which may help. Surgery may also be an option for some males with Gynecomastia.

This disorder is considered to be an endocrine system disorder. The increases in breast tissue size are not cancerous. Seventy percent of boys of adolescent age experience breast development as they go through puberty.

Newborns may also experience Gynecomastia which tends to go away pretty rapidly. In both newborn males and adolescent males, hormone shifts related to maternal hormones tend to trigger the condition. Hormonal shifts which occur in puberty may also cause this condition to happen.

Typically, the adolescent male form of Gynecomastia is linked with harmless changes which relate to puberty. However, boys may feel shame and embarrassment when their breast tissue grows.

In rarer instances, people who are suffering from Klinefelter syndrome, or particular forms of cancer, may suffer from this condition. Disorders which impact the endrocrine system or trigger dysfunction which is metabolic may have the capacity to cause the over-development of breast tissue.

This condition upsets some males who have it and their feelings are important. This is why any male who is unhappy with his breast tissue development should seek out help from a cosmetic surgeon.

If you have a teen son who is suffering from Gynecomastia, be sure to gently discuss the issue with him. See if it bothers him. If it does, encourage him to see a physician. There is help out there and talking to a doctor is the best way to find it.

Causes

The hormones, testosterone and estrogen, are usually out of balance in males who have the condition. It may affect one breast or both. Men and boys may have breast development which is even, or it may be uneven. The condition also afflicts some newborn males.

In newborn males, bigger breasts are a result of exposure to estrogen via their mothers. Breast size in male newborns will typically normalize within a couple of weeks after birth or a little longer.

Higher levels of estrogens versus androgens cause the condition to develop. It’s also possible that it may develop due to side effects from drugs, whether they are prescription medications or banned substances.

Examples of health conditions which may trigger this condition include chronic kidney failure, liver cirrhosis and hyperthyroidism. Men who seek out diagnoses for this condition have varying outcomes.

For example, adolescent males with pubertal gynecomastia which isn’t resolvable make up twenty-five percent of diagnosed cases. Drug use, whether it’s prescription drugs or banned substances, make up ten to twenty-five percent of cases.

Unknown causes make up twenty-five percent of cases. These unknown cases are considered to be idiopathic. Males who are in puberty may experience improvements. These cases may resolve, without the need for treatment, within six months to a couple of years.

Usually, this type of condition will develop between the ages of ten and twelve years. It’s most common between the ages of thirteen to fourteen. Above the age of 17, only twenty percent of males in puberty who have Gynecomastia still experience symptoms. 

Symptoms

A cosmetic surgeon is the best person to talk to about Gynecomastia symptoms. He or she will look at your medical history and also consider the age at which you began to have symptoms (breast swelling which doesn’t look traditionally masculine), as well as the length of time that you’ve had symptoms.

Also, a doctor may look for certain things which may boost the odds of your developing this condition, including mumps, usage of alcohol, drug use or trauma to the testicles. Don’t be afraid to talk to your doctor about this health condition.

It is typically not serious in terms of impacting health and it is something that doctors have seen before. In many cases, it will go away on its own. If it doesn’t, there should be practical treatment options.

Symptoms may differ from person to person. However, most males will find that swollen breast tissue is the most noticeable symptom. It may or may not be accompanied by pain or discharge.

Now that you know more about Gynecomastia symptoms, why not see a cosmetic surgeon today? If you feel that you may have this condition, it’s safe to say that your doctor will be able to help. It’s also good to get checked out as, in rare cases, underlying health issues cause this type of problem.

By treating the underlying health issue, your doctor may be able to resolve the symptoms of Gynecomastia. Hormone shifts play a prominent role in the development of this disorder. However, its symptoms may be caused by other factors.

When you do talk to a doctor, you’ll be able to figure out exactly why you are experiencing unwanted breast growth. The sooner you seek out medical advice and assistance, the better.

Once a doctor asks about your symptoms, performs tests and creates a treatment plan (if one is needed), you’ll know that you are doing all that you can to move past this embarrassing disorder and forward to better self-esteem. With this in mind, be sure to go and see your family doctor today.

Surgery & Treatment

With older males, liposuction may be a practical Gynecomastia cure. It’s a form of cosmetic surgery whereby fatty deposits are removed from the body via suction. Trouble spots may be targeted in order to slim their profile and it does work well.

Another option is a male breast reduction. It’s an effective way to improve the appearance of male breasts which are enlarged. When you choose this type of cosmetic surgery operation, it will take away extra fat in the breast area and also remove glandular tissue.

It’s a good way to get this part of the body looking flat and firm again. It will give the chest a look which is more traditionally masculine. Only a doctor will know which treatment is right for you.

We encourage you to see your doctor today and get a formal diagnosis. The doctor will look at your age, medical history and other factors and then come up with a treatment plan which is appropriate. It may or may not include surgery.

Surgery always comes with risks, whether it’s cosmetic or not. Before you agree to surgery, your doctor will speak with you and outline the risks, which include bleeding and infection. Expect to need some recovery time before you move forward and continue with your regular daily activities.

In some cases, surgery is life-changing. When self-esteem is dramatically lowered, surgery has the potential to raise it to a high degree. For this reason, it’s nice to know that surgical options are available.

Cost

The cost of Gynecomastia ranges from ₹85,000 – ₹2,00,000 ($1,300 – $3,100 Approximately) in India. Prices may vary based on location of surgery and which surgeon is performing the operation. If you’re shopping around, price should factor in, but it shouldn’t be your first priority.

The quality of surgical care should always be priority one. To get the best surgical care, be sure to look for a surgeon who is board-certified. This type of surgeon will have proven skills and he or she will be allowed to work in particular hospitals. This is called having “hospital privileges”.

While you may need to pay a bit more for surgery for this health issue when you choose a surgeon who is board-certified, you should know that it will be worth it.

In terms of the cost of other types of treatments, the cost of medication may or may not be covered under your health insurance plan.

As you can see, prices for surgery vary a lot and it’s important to know how much you’ll need to pay beforehand. A doctor should be able to let you know the cost of prescription medication. Your pharmacist will also know.

A surgeon will be able to let you know how much he or she will charged for a procedure which is designed to reduce or eliminate the breast tissue growth from Gynecomastia. If you need medication or a procedure, we recommend contacting your health insurance provider company. Find out what you’re covered for in advance. It’s always best to get the facts first.

Candidacy

This condition contributes to over-development of male breast tissue. In order to be considered a candidate for a surgical procedure, such as a male breast reduction, you should speak with your family doctor.

He or she will be able to check you out and see if you have underlying medical conditions, or one underlying medical condition, which may impact your ability to be a successful candidate for surgery which is cosmetic. If your doctor gives you the ok, you should be able to see a cosmetic surgeon, who will then evaluate you him or herself.

The process shouldn’t be too long-winded. In other words, it won’t be too hard to find out whether or not you are a candidate for surgery. With medication which is a treatment for Gynecomastia, you should be able to get checked out by your doctor, who lets you know whether or not medication for this disorder is appropriate for you.

Basically, it starts at the doctor. With this in mind, you should be sure to visit your family physician today. A doctor will be able to exclude or confirm the presence of Gynecomastia. Once you’ve learned whether you have it, you’ll be ready to decide how to deal with the issue.

Your doctor will be able to let you know if your form of overdeveloped breast tissue is usually a temporary thing or if it tends to be a permanent affliction.    

Recovery

Recovery from Gynecomastia surgery is usually not too long-winded or uncomfortable. However, the key surgical treatment for this excess of male breast tissue is plastic surgery. Basically, men who get surgery are getting breast reduction operations. After surgery, there will be swelling and there may be some pain.

In general, the first three to four days after recovery are the most difficult. If you need this operation, which is typically elective, your surgeon will let you know how to take care of yourself once you leave the hospital. There will be incisions to keep clean and certain pain relievers may be prescribed to you to help you feel better as you heal.

All told, you’ll need about two months to recover completely. However, three or four days post-surgery, you should be able to resume your normal daily activities, or most of them. The exception is driving. It’s best to wait at least seven days after your operation before taking the wheel. You’ll need to be patient in order to see results.

Swelling will need to go down before you attain the flat, masculine chest look that you want and this definitely takes time. So, prepare to wait a bit before seeing final results.Getting help from family and friends and following all self-care advice from your doctor will be important. Make sure to accept offers of help. It’s a time to rest and let other people take care of you.

The most common medications which are prescribed in order to ease or eliminate symptoms of Gynecomastia include Clomiphene, which is anti-estrogen, and Danazol, which is a lab-created form of testosterone.

These medications work by counteracting the hormone imbalances which typically trigger Gynecomastia. Surgery options include liposuction and male breast reductions. Surgery comes with risks, including bleeding and infection, but it may be right for some patients.

Non-surgical Alternatives

Some people use creams or herbal remedies in order to tackle “man boobs”. Creams will typically contain caffeine which reduces water content within breasts and makes them look smaller. However, creams won’t provide permanent results. That being said, they are a good quick fix when a man or adolescent wants to feel more confident for a while.

Herbal remedies, such as using more turmeric in recipes or taking it as a supplement, may also be helpful. In general, herbal remedies are used in order to burn fat. By helping to burn more calories, they assist with decreasing fatty deposits.

Exercises

If surgery isn’t right for you, you may wish to consider non-surgical options. For example, a diet which is low in dairy (dairy products may contain hormones which trigger Gynecomastia) may help to ease the condition. Getting a lot of exercise will also be helpful.

Exercise promotes weight loss. Male breast tissue may therefore be reduced when you work out a lot. We also recommend drinking a lot of water, as it will help your body to shed extra weight and to appear as lean as possible. A clean diet and a good workout routine will be helpful. They may not always be enough, but they will always help.

Before and After

Results from male breast reduction operations, which may or may not involve liposuction, are typically very dramatic and positive.

For example, liposuction, whereby fatty deposits are suctioned out via a tool known as a cannula, is an extremely effective way to flatten the male breasts and give them a traditionally-masculine appearance.

No matter which surgical technique is utilised in order to remove fatty deposits, you will likely notice incredible improvement. We recommend choosing a board-certified plastic surgeon, as doing so will improve your odds of getting the flatter male breast look that you want.

This type of surgical procedure will have hospital privileges and an excellent skill level, as well as all of the right credentials. It’s possible to view Gynecomastia before and after photographs online, via the websites of plastic surgeons who perform procedures.

There may also be before and after photos from these operations at other websites online. When you check out photos, you’ll have a more realistic sense of what surgery for Gynecomastia has to offer. Results will vary based on surgeon. Each surgeon has his or her own style.

FAQs

Q. Can Man Boobs Grow Back after Gynecomastia?

After male breast reduction surgery, it’s quite unlikely that man boobs will grow back. The surgeon will remove most of the fat cells within the breast area and they aren’t likely to regrow, which is good news for men who want long-lasting results.

Also, lots of times, this condition does go away on its own. For example, most adolescent boys find that their symptoms go away naturally by the time that they are 17. Seventy percent of adolescent males have resolved symptoms by age 17, which is good news.

With older men who choose alternative therapies in order to treat Gynecomastia, there is risk of recurrence. For example, if fatty deposits are reduced or eliminated via diet and exercise, weight may be regained later on and it may reappear in the breast area, thereby creating a “man boobs” look.

In general, prescription medications for this disorder will work well and provide long-lasting results. However, it is possible that weight gain after therapy with these medications will lead to more weight gain in the future.

So, surgery is definitely the most long-lasting treatment. However, it is also the most invasive. The best way to know which treatment will offer you the best results is to talk to your doctor today. He or she will diagnose or exclude Gynecomastia and then look at your medical history.

As well, he or she will consider other variables, such as your age, before coming up with a treatment plan. Surgery for this condition will usually be cosmetic and elective, so it may not be covered by your health plan. Usually, it costs around thirty-five hundred dollars, but prices will vary.

Q. How to Make Nipples Smaller and Less Puffy?

Creams which contain caffeine are good choices for those who want to ease the look of puffy nipples. These creams are effective over the short-term. They take away excess fluid and give a sleeker look.

Women use these types of creams in order to give their legs a sleeker, cellulite-free look and men may use the same types of treatments in order to get a sleeker chest look.

Massage these creams, which may be marketed as body care products, into nipples daily and massage some more into the entire breast area.

Within a short period of time, you should notice less puffiness and a smaller nipple look. There is no permanent way to reduce the size of nipples without cosmetic surgery. 

1 Comment

  1. Madhan says:

    Hello doctor !! Whom I think you as next to God. First of all i must bow my head and thank Dr. Jayanthy Ravindran mam.

    Who gave a great solution for my gynecomastia and obesity problem. I am the world’s most happiest person bcoz tamira team and mainly the doctors who helped me all aspects.

    Thanks is a small 6 letter word mam but I whole heartly praise to who changed me from all styles of my life…

    Wishing and cheering you to change my peoples lifestyle as you changed me!

    Love? you a lot to all the Doctors and staff in tamira team✌?

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