Gynecomastia is swelling of the breast tissue or breast enlargement in boys or men, which is caused by too high estrogen production. A man also produces the female sex hormone estrogen, but only in a small amount. Too high estrogen production can lead to breast enlargement, usually on both sides but it can also occur on one side. Saltaf.org says that a newborns, adolescents and older men may develop gynecomastia as a result of normal changes in hormone levels, although other causes may also lead to breast enlargement. Gynecomastia is not usually a serious problem, but the presence of too much mammary gland and / or adipose tissue is a disturbing problem for many men in which shame comes around the corner. Gynecomastia can disappear spontaneously. If it persists,
Big breasts in men or boys: causes
Gynecomastia can occur in all kinds of situations where the balance between estrogenic and androgenic activity is disturbed. In babies this phenomenon occurs when the fetus in the womb has been exposed to estrogen of the mother. A large proportion of the boys in puberty experience development of mammary gland tissue for some time as a result of increased estrogen levels. This is a normal situation that disappears automatically after a few months to a year.
In adult men it mainly occurs as a result of overweight or alcohol abuse. A number of drugs that influence the level of female sex hormones can also lead to gynecomastia. For example, hormonal therapy in prostate cancer gynaecomastia by blockade of the androgen receptor, resulting in an increase in LH-, estrogen- and testosterone concentrations via negative feedback mechanisms.¹ Furthermore, different disorders can lead to gynaecomastia because it affects the normal hormone balance. Examples of these conditions are:
Some tumors involving the testes, adrenal glands or the pituitary gland;
Too fast thyroid gland, hyperthyroidism ;
Kidney failure ;
Liver disorders .
Symptoms that can occur include:
Swollen mammary gland tissue on one or both sides;
Sensitive breast (s);
Solid or rubbery lump in the subcutaneous tissue, which is tangible under the nipple;
Separation from the nipple.
With the above symptoms, you should always contact your doctor to rule out breast cancer .
Most cases of gynecomastia disappears over time without treatment. However, if gynecomastia is caused by an underlying condition, treatment will follow. If it is related to medication use, you can discuss with your doctor whether you can switch to a different medication. Never stop using medicines on your own.
However, if no indications are found that indicate one of the above conditions or a medicinal cause, the general practitioner will be satisfied with reassurance and possible monitoring after three to six months. In more than 90% of the boys gynecomastia disappears spontaneously within two years. If the deviation lasts longer than two years, further investigation or referral to a specialist can be carried out if necessary.
No spontaneous regression occurs in old age. Physiological gynecomastia can in that case be treated medically. Surgical therapy can also offer a solution: there are all sorts of treatment techniques to treat the presence of too much mammary gland and / or adipose tissue.