What is Gynecomastia?
- Gynecomastia is the enlargement of the glandular tissue of the male breast.
- Gynecomastia can occur during babyhood and puberty in normally-developing males.
- During babyhood, childhood, youth and middle-aged to older men, gynecomastia may be common.
- Inequality in the hormones, with a relative extra of estrogens (female hormones), when compared to androgens (male hormones), can be results for gynecomastia.
- Gynecomastia must be differentiated from lipomastia or pseudogynecomastia, which refers to the asset of fat accumulation in the breast area of obese men.
The Causes of Gynecomastia
- Corticosteroids and Anabolic Steroids
- Low Testosterone Levels
- High Estrogen Levels
- Anabolic Steroids and Corticosteroids
- Narcotic Drugs
- Anti-anxiety Drugs
Gynecomastia Treatment Procedure
Medications (danazol, tamoxifen, Nolvadex, clomiphene, etc.) are more effective in reducing gynecomastia in its early stages. After the tissue has become stable, medications are not probable to be effective, therefore surgical removal is the only possible treatment.
Breast reduction (reduction mammoplasty) surgery has been used in;
- critical cases of the condition,
- long-term gynecomastia,
- cases in which medication therapies have not been effective to help restore a normal breast appearance.
The breast mainly consists of glandular tissue, which is thick and tight, and fatty tissue, which is soft. A man with gynecomastia may have excessively of both tissue types.
Liposuction can remove extra fatty tissue.
Excision means cutting out the tissue, to remove extra glandular tissue. Excision may leave some unseeable scar around the edge of the nipple.
If a major reduction in skin and tissue is essential, the incision and the scar can be larger but by the time it will be almost invisible.
In some cases, gynecomastia surgery can include excision and liposuction together.
After Gynecomastia Surgery
After gynecomastia operation, the chest may be bruised and swollen.
The surgeon can recommend to the patient to wear an elastic pressure garment for 14 days to reduce the swelling.
Usually, it takes about 3 weeks to return to a normal routine.
Complications of Gynecomastia Surgery
Gynecomastia surgery complications are rare. They are;
- dissatisfying removal of breast tissue,
- unequal contour to the chest,
- losing the sensation of one or both nipples.
Excision may cause bleeding therefore the surgeon may use the drain to avoid the bleeding because if bleeding does not stop after the operation, it can cause blood clot forming. But this risk is very rare.
Frequently Asked Questions About Gynecomastia
The operation may take from one to three hours depending on the intervention will be performed.
There will be pains after the process of gynecomastia but these pains can be alleviated using painkillers.
Gynecomastia surgery has the same known risks in all other surgeries which are risks of bleeding infection and anesthesia, it has no other major risks.
In puberty it is possible to have chest enlargement for men by a certain amount due to the hormonal disorders, in case this enlargement was huge or the chest did not return to its normal size, this leads to enlargement of chest tissue, this condition called gynecomastia. Enlargement of the chest tissue of men can also be observed as a result of excessive weight gain or the use of certain medications.
There is no direct relationship between gynecomastia and chest cancer. However, if rapid growth or asymmetrically seen in one or both breasts is outside the puberty period, it should be checked up as chest cancer risk.
The recommended minimum age for gynecomastia is 18 because chest enlargement in childhood and adolescence may resolve spontaneously. Therefore, we should wait for the growth of the body to complete, if the chest still larger than normal after the completion of body growth gynecomastia can be performed.
There is no upper age limit for gynecomastia surgery, any man who is in good health can undergo gynecomastia surgery, but it is mostly preferred by young and middle-aged men.
Balanced and healthy nutrition since childhood, doing exercises, and paying attention to the contents of the medications used to reduce the risk of gynecomastia.
Since gynecomastia is not considered as a medical necessity by the insurers, the insurers do not pay for this operation.
In the case of false gynecomastia resulting from excess weight gaining, it is possible to shrink the size of the breast by losing weight, but in the case of true gynecomastia surgery is the only solution.
If surgery is performed under local anesthesia, the patient may be discharged on the same day. But, in severe cases that require more surgical intervention, surgery is performed under general anesthesia, so the patient should stay in the hospital for 1 night.
Gynecomastia surgery is usually performed with small incisions and / or liposuction. The incisions will become barely seen within 6 months.
Because the tissue is evacuated during gynecomastia surgery, the patient should use the corset recommended by the doctor 3 weeks at least in order to prevent the filling of blood and seroma into the formed cavity and to adhere to the skin as soon as possible.
There is no possibility of breast enlargement again due to breast tissue growth after gynecomastia surgery, but it is possible for breasts to get enlarged again in case of excess weight gain.