Gynecomastia: Surgery, Treatment, Causes and Symptoms
Gynecomastia or enlarged breast in men is a fairly common problem faced today. Generally, people are apprehensive about their condition and getting treatment for the same because of the stigma associated with it. Gynecomastia causes a lot of anxiety and psychological distress to the patient.
It is important to remember that there are now a lot of treatment options available for this condition like gynecomastia surgery, drugs, etc that can be used to cure the condition.
Through this article, we will discuss gynecomastia in detail. All the symptoms, causes, and available treatments like Gynecomastia surgery in Delhi, it's cost etc would be discussed.
Table of Contents
Feel free to skip ahead if one topic catches your eye:
- What is Gynecomastia?
- What causes breast enlargement in men?
- Early Signs of Gynecomastia
- Treatment options
1. What is Gynecomastia?
The mammary gland or the breasts contain glandular tissue and fat deposits in humans. While the glandular tissue is properly developed in the females for feeding a baby, it is rudimentary in the males. Female breasts also contain more fat deposits as compared to men. But a few reasons can cause this rudimentary tissue to enlarge in males. Some other factors cause more fat deposition in the male breast.
When there is a benign (non-cancerous) enlargement of this breast tissue in men, that condition is known as gynecomastia. This can occur in one or both the breasts of the male.
Breast enlargement is common in 3 age groups - newborns, adolescents, and men's above the age of 50. Gynecomastia is common in newborns due to the estrogen from the mother’s body. It usually resolves on its own in 2 to 3 weeks. During adolescence, 50-70% of males have been seen to exhibit gynecomastia due to the change in body hormones. This also resolves on its own in about 6 months to 2 years. Gynecomastia in older men occurs because of decreasing testosterone and increasing subcutaneous fat tissue. This condition is known as senile gynecomastia. The prevalence of gynecomastia is increasing nowadays due to the abuse of anabolic steroids.
2. What Causes Breast Enlargement in Men?
The basic reason for gynecomastia to occur is the disbalance between the male hormone, testosterone, and the female hormone estrogen. The decrease of testosterone or an increase in the levels of estrogen or a combination of both can lead to gynecomastia.
Now, there are several factors that can lead to this disbalance of hormones in the male body which we will discuss below.
Gynecomastia causes include the following:
- Abuse of anabolic steroids
- Certain medications
- Chronic diseases
- Testicular or adrenal tumors
- Improper nutrition
Abuse of Anabolic Steroids :-
The rising use of anabolic steroids by people for muscle development is now leading to an increased prevalence of gynecomastia. These anabolic steroids can be converted to estrogen in the body, leading to an imbalance between testosterone and estrogen and causing gynecomastia.
Excess fat in obese men gets deposited in the breast tissue and causes pseudo-gynecomastia. Increased fatty tissue also leads to androgen conversion, that is, testosterone conversion to estrogen causing gynecomastia.
Certain medications like finasteride, spironolactone, cimetidine, ketoconazole, calcium channel blockers (verapamil, amlodipine, etc), diazepam, metronidazole, etc can lead to gynecomastia.
Substances like alcohol, marijuana, heroin, methadone, etc can also cause the disease.
Chronic diseases :-
Many chronic diseases like liver disease, kidney failure, hyperthyroidism, hypogonadism, hypoandrogenism, etc can lead to hormone imbalance and cause gynecomastia in men.
Testicular or adrenal tumors :-
Tumors in these glands can lead to increased estrogen or decreased testosterone production in the body which can eventually lead to breast enlargement in men.
Improper nutrition :-
Malnutrition or starvation causes the testosterone levels to drop and also affect the estrogen levels in the body. This leads to gynecomastia in men that can even persist after normal nutrition is resumed.
3. Early Signs of Gynecomastia :-
One of the first symptoms of gynecomastia that people notice is an increase in the size of the breast(s). This can be unilateral or bilateral.
Other common signs and symptoms of gynecomastia that are commonly observed by patients include pain and tenderness (pain at touch) in the affected breast(s). In appearance, the affected breast looks like the female breasts. The enlargement can be symmetrical or asymmetrical if present in both breasts.
Men suffering from gynecomastia can deal with a lot of anxiety and psychological stress because of the condition. A lot of patients are also worried about other diagnoses like breast cancer until it is ruled out.
4. Treatment Options :-
Your doctor will take a detailed history of your symptoms and your past history of any chronic diseases and the medications that you are taking. A physical examination will also be conducted for you to confirm the diagnosis. Some blood tests may be conducted to check your hormone levels. Breast imaging like mammography (X-Ray) or Ultrasound may also be recommended.
Pubertal gynecomastia do not require treatment and resolve on their own at most by 2 yrs of age.
In other cases, the mainstay treatment involves managing the underlying condition. If you are suffering from any chronic disease, then treating that disease will lead to resolving the symptoms. In case it occurs because of some medications, then the doctor will stop those medications and prescribe you some other medicines for that particular problem.
Medical treatment is not successful in treatment of gynaecomastia.Medications like SERMs (Selective Estrogen Receptor Modulators) like tamoxifen, clomiphene, etc may be used for the treatment. Surgery is required in cases of untreated gynecomastia and it involves the removal of the excess glandular tissue and fat. This is probably the most effective treatment of gynecomastia.
Surgery can have some complications like hematoma formation (collection of internal bleeding in the breast), infection, changes in breast sensitivity, etc. Therefore, it is extremely important that you get your gynecomastia surgery done by a qualified professional only.
This was a brief article on the various causes and treatment options of gynecomastia. For further information, consult with a qualified doctor who will be able to guide you further.
At ANAYSHA Aesthetics ,you will get the best solution according to your concern and you will get the right treatment at affordable costs. This is one of the best places for gynecomastia surgery in Delhi.