Doctors refer to man boobs as gynecomastia. It is the enlargement of a man’s breasts caused from hormonal imbalances or hormonal therapy. Man boobs often embarrass most men, so they may search for alternatives to reduce the breast, which may include gynecomastia surgery. This physical condition affects only the male gender, usually during puberty.
Gynecomastia comes from the Greek terms “gyne” and “mastos,” which when translated means woman-like breast. This is an abnormal enlargement of either one or both breasts caused from the development of breast tissues. The causes may link to serious problems, and in extreme cases, it may link to a disease.
Hormones play a chief role in causing male breasts to enlarge. Normally, men begin developing man boobs around puberty, which is known as pubertal hypertrophy. Disc shaped breast tissue grows, which is under the areola. Usually, it will remain the same size and may disappear spontaneously for the average male within one or two years.
Extreme cases, however, do not go into remission. Instead, the breasts remain enlarged permanently, which causes disturbances or severe embarrassment for men.
While doctors look for an absolute cause, they offer treatment and surgery for this problem. Some doctors believe that men with enlarged breasts experience such problems because of estrogen build up and that these hormones are responsible for the growth of breast mass. Both men and women are noted to have a large amount circulating in the blood.
Hormones play a chief role in development of body components during puberty for females. Males, however, produce a smaller amount of estrogen normally, which is commonly inactivated by the liver. For men testosterone is the dominant hormone.
Studies show that an increase of estrogen in men plays a chief role in changing the cellular elements in breast tissue. Increase of estrogen may occur during puberty. Taking steroids increases estrogen, which when taken increases body mass for bodybuilders. Patients who suffer with liver cirrhosis or other liver disease can experience the increase in estrogen levels since estrogen is not suppressed by the defective liver.
Tumors may secrete abnormal levels of estrogen into the blood, which may contribute to an increase of estrogen levels. Particular prescribed medications for disease or infections, including prostate cancer, antidepressants, ulcer medication, and a few antibiotics may cause an increase of estrogen.
In order to treat extreme cases of man boobs, gynecomastia surgery is required. Surgeons will perform a mammogram usually, or x-rays of the breast, to rule out possible cancer, while revealing the composition of the breast tissues. Once the doctor is aware of how much tissue needs removed, the surgeon will discuss the best approach for the procedure.