Men may not seem to care as much about their appearance as women, but that’s hardly the case. Men do care about their appearance. No man wants to have a big “beer belly,” a sagging neck, pudgy arms, thick thighs, a chubby face, or enlarged breasts, which are otherwise known as “gynecomastia.”
What is gynecomastia? It refers to the swelling of breast tissue in males, including boys and grown men. Gynecomastia is caused by hormonal imbalances, and it can affect one or both of a man’s breasts. Sometimes, it can even be uneven.
Is Gynecomastia Serious?
Generally, doctors and the medical community do not view gynecomastia as a serious health concern, however, it can be hard for a man to cope with the issue. Enlarged male breasts can be embarrassing.
Gynecomastia can make it so a man is uncomfortable around romantic partners, and it can make him uncomfortable without a shirt on, but that’s only the beginning. Gynecomastia can affect a man’s clothing choices, exercise, and his overall quality of life for many reasons. It can affect self-esteem and dating too.
Gynecomastia can be caused by an overproduction of estrogen, especially after the age of 50. Most people think that estrogen is only a female hormone, but men produce it too. When a man’s estrogen levels are too high, it can produce enlarged male breasts. Gynecomastia can also be caused by medications.
Medications that Cause Gynecomastia
There are actually a number of medications that can cause enlarged breasts in men. If you have gynecomastia and you’re on any of the following medications, it may be one of the side effects of the drug:
- Chemotherapy treatment
- Heart medications, such as Lanoxin
- Ulcer medications, such as Tagamet HB
- Anti-androgens for prostate conditions, such as Proscar, Propecia and Aldactone
- Androgens and anabolic steroids
- Various AIDS medications, such as Sustiva
- And more
Next: Preparing for Gynecomastia Surgery
If you’re struggling with gynecomastia, please contact our office to schedule a consultation with our Board-Certified Plastic Surgeon, Dr. Yuly Gorodisky. He can not only help you identify the cause of your condition, but he can explain all of your treatment options.