Gynecomastia is a fairly common condition, but it is better known by the name ‘man boobs’. This is because gynecomastia is characterized by excess breast tissue in males that cause them to have a much more feminine appearance that more closely resembles actual breasts rather than the tighter, more toned chest associated with the male silhouette. Unsurprisingly, men who experience gynecomastia can find that the condition has some serious psychological consequences. An unwillingness to wear certain clothes or to go shirtless, loss of confidence, low self-esteem and even depression aren’t uncommon. Causing such a considerable impact, it isn’t surprising that those with gynecomastia find that their personal and professional relationships suffer too.
Fortunately, there is no need for men to live with the effects of gynecomastia. Surgery can successfully remove the excess breast tissue and sculpt the chest area, leaving patients with a smoother, flatter and more masculine shape.
For some men, it will never be entirely clear why they have developed excess breast tissue. However, there are some factors that make gynecomastia more likely. These include:
Abnormal hormone levels. Both men and women have male and female hormones. During puberty, estrogen and progesterone stimulate breast growth. Males don’t typically have much of either of this hormone, ensuring that their chest remains flat. However, if you have unusually high levels of these hormones, you may enter a period of breast growth. This may resolve itself, but if it doesn’t, you could be left with excess breast tissue.
Weight gain. As we get older, we find it much easier to gain weight. When we gain weight, our fat cells expand, and this causes our body to get larger. When this happens on the chest, it can cause breast tissue to develop, whilst the natural loss of elasticity in the skin that also happens as we age, enables the tissue to sag, enhancing the appearance of the breasts.
Medications. Nearly all medications have some side effects. Some prescription medications have been known to cause excess breast tissue to develop. These include drugs that are used to treat stomach ulcers, heartburns, heart problems, and high blood pressure. In this instance, it may be possible to resolve gynecomastia by changing your medication.
People who are considered to be a good candidate for gynecomastia surgery typically include the following:
- Men who are physically healthy and are happy with their current weight, which should fall within healthy parameters
- Men whose breast development has stabilized and not changed in at least 12-18 months
- Men who are physically or psychologically bothered by their excess breast tissue
- Patients who don’t use any recreational drugs
- Men who have realistic expectations for the result of their procedure
- Men who are committed to a healthy, active lifestyle so that they do not gain weight (which could put them at risk of developing excess breast tissue again in the future)
If you are considering gynecomastia surgery, you will need to attend a consultation to ensure that you are a suitable candidate for this transformative treatment. To schedule your confidential candidacy assessment, please contact our offices today.