Male Breasts –Gynaecomastia
Males tend to develop enlargement of breasts in two phases of their lives.
One occurs during puberty and then above the age of 40-45 .
In both instances the cause is the imbalance that is created between the female and male hormones in the body.
Male breast enlargement or gynaecomastia during puberty settles down with time and by the end of the teens disappears in90% of cases..
The commonest symptoms young boys experience is increased sensitivity and enlargement of the male breast sometimes resembling a female breast.
In those patients where the swelling does not go down surgery is an alternative that can be explored in certain cases.
In common language male breast are also referred to as moobs
In the older male the presentation can be in form of a new lump
It is absolutely necessary to rule out any sinister causes before making a diagnosis of gynaecomastia..One usually needs an Ultrasound along with blood tests and examination of the testicles by a specialist breast surgeon.
The symptoms of gynaecomastia can vary from a small enlargement of breast tissue just behind the nipple to a larger more female-looking breast.
Gynaecomastia can affect one or both breasts. The area can be tender to touch or painful.
Men produce testosterone and oestrogen in their body. With age the levels of testosterone go down and more oestrogen is available. Pain is a common symptom and the pain one experiences related to the development of new breasts. This is a similar pain women experience in their breasts.
As men get older, they tend to have more body fat, which produces more oestrogen. Men also produce less testosterone as they get older.
The combination of an increase in oestrogen levels and reduced testosterone levels can cause the breasts to become larger.
Many men accept this change as another part of the ageing process. .
Other causes of gynaecomastia
Other causes of gynaecomastia include:
• ill health – many medical conditions can be associated with gynaecomastia, although it’s unlikely to be the only symptom
• drugs and medication – some illegal drugs (such as cannabis or anabolic steroids) or prescription medication (such as medication for high blood pressure or heart conditions) can cause gynaecomastia
• herbal products – some herbal supplements can contain oestrogen, which can increase the amount of the hormone in the body
• being overweight – the more fat cells a person has in their body, the more oestrogen they produce, which in turn can make breast tissue grow
• drinking too much alcohol – this can create a hormone imbalance.
• One of the common causes of very large breast are being found in patients who have had treatment for prostate cancer.
• Are there any serious risks of cancer ?
If one has definite gynaecomastia you have no risk at all.
This will never turn in to a cancer.
Surgery for Male Breast Reduction
Male breast reduction can be performed by a combination of surgery and liposuction
A thorough assessment of the patient is made and depending upon the size of the breast and the laxity of the skin and the age of the patient.
It is extremely important to determine how much fat and how much glandular breast tissue is present.
In most cases a combination of liposuction and excision of breast tissue through keyhole incisions can be preformed.
Some patients will need a complete excision of breast tissue with reduction of the excess skin .
Recovery is quick and most cases are done as day case surgery.
Some may need a second corrective procedure.
Complications from the surgery : All surgery is associated with complications some of the known risks with this surgery include reduced nipple sensation, nipple necrosis, bleeding after surgery and infection. All the complications can be dealt with.