Most of us have a male friend with larger than normal breasts, kind of like Chris Farley back in the day. You may have been boating with friends and heard them refer to your friend’s “man boobs.” Your friend may even describe them that way.
Most people just assume the larger breasts are simply due to weight gain. But in half the cases you’d be wrong with that assumption — around half of men with this condition have what is known as male breast enlargement, clinically known as gynecomastia. It’s a condition that can really impact a man’s self-esteem, making him avoid trips to the lake or even taking off a shirt while out working in the yard. That’s no way to go through an awesome Michigan summer!
At Elite, our four board-certified plastic surgeons can address the condition with male breast reduction. January’s a great time because come summer and trips to the lake, you won’t mind taking off your shirt.
What leads to gynecomastia?
When adults develop gynecomastia, the causes are not always easy to pinpoint.
But in teenagers, gynecomastia is more the norm than not. Up to 70 percent of adolescent/pubescent boys have enlarged breasts to some degree. In teens, the cause is obvious: rampaging testosterone and estrogen levels. As these levels fluctuate wildly during puberty, so can breast size and other issues that are linked to hormone levels such as facial hair. These changes are temporary in most teens, resolving when they exit puberty.
In adults, middle-aged and older men can also develop enlarged breasts due to hormone changes that come with aging. But more often gynecomastia comes from taking certain medications. These are the medications known to have a link to gynecomastia:
- Heartburn treatment drugs
- Anti-anxiety drugs
- Tricyclic antidepressants
- AIDS treatment drugs
Heavy drinking and smoking marijuana can also lead to gynecomastia.
Breast reduction surgery
Men with gynecomastia have a firm, rubbery mass underneath the nipple area. The size of this mass is around 1.5 inches across, and it may be sensitive to the touch.
If surgery is required, small incisions are made in the armpits or around the areolae. Through those incisions, excess fat and glandular tissue are removed and excess skin is trimmed. Your Elite Plastic Surgery surgeon may also include liposuction to remove fat pockets. If excess fat is the key, the patient may only need liposuction.
If you’re a man and you have larger than normal breasts, you don’t have to live with them, Call the team at Elite Plastic Surgery, (616) 459-1907, to schedule your consultation.