What is Gynecomastia?
Gynecomastia is an increase in the amount of breast gland tissue, which causes enlargement or swelling of the male breasts. It’s found in men of all ages, from newborns to elders, but is most commonly found in men between the ages of 50 and 69. While gynecomastia is typically not a serious condition, it may cause pain or tenderness in one or both breasts, or in some cases, swelling or nipple discharge. It may also affect only one breast or both breasts with the possibility of affecting one breast more than the other.
What Causes Gynecomastia?
Gynecomastia is commonly triggered by an imbalance between the hormones testosterone and estrogen. Although each of these hormones produces traits in males and females, males still produce small amounts of estrogen. In some cases, men may have estrogen levels that are too high or unbalanced with their testosterone levels, leading to gynecomastia. Several things that can upset your hormone balance include the following:
Natural Hormone Changes
While hormones can change at any time, gynecomastia is more likely to occur during these particular phases in a man’s life:
- After Birth: Newborns are still under the effects of their mother’s estrogen while developing in the womb. Because of this, more than half of male infants are born with enlarged breasts, which will typically go away after two to three weeks.
- During Puberty: Hormone levels dramatically change during puberty, which can lead to gynecomastia. If a boy going through puberty is going through this condition, it may go away without treatment within six months to two years.
- At Mid-Life and Beyond: At least one in four men between the ages of 50 and 69 is affected by gynecomastia, as breast enlargement peaks between the ages of 50 and 80 in men.
Some medications that can cause gynecomastia include:
- Anti-androgens used to treat an enlarged prostate, prostate cancer, or other conditions
- Anabolic steroids and androgens
- AIDS medications
- Anti-Anxiety medications
- Tricyclic antidepressants
- Certain calcium channel blockers
- Medications to treat fungal and bacterial infections
- Ulcer medications
Drugs and Alcohol
Alcohol, along with the following drugs, may increase the chances of developing gynecomastia:
The following conditions can also lead to gynecomastia:
- Kidney failure
- Liver failure
How is Gynecomastia Treated?
While some cases of gynecomastia resolve over time without treatment or with prescribed medications, surgery is sometimes required to help with severe pain and tenderness. Men who are embarrassed by the size of their breasts may also consider surgery to fix their appearance. Surgical treatment for gynecomastia at Spiro Plastic Surgery depends on the diagnosis or type of tissue causing the enlargement. If the tissue is all fatty excess, then liposuction is recommended, but if the problem is an excess of glandular tissue then excisions will need to be made with incisions around the areola. However, if the problem is both glandular and fatty excess tissue, then a combination of liposuction and excision is the best choice. Rarely do any other incisions need to be made other than small incisions around the areola as the moderately lax skin tends to retract with healing.
Male Breast Reduction in West Orange, New Jersey
At Spiro Plastic Surgery, we know struggling with gynecomastia can be painful, both physically and mentally. Our highly-skilled team will be there for you every step of the way to meet your expectations. Please take a look at our gynecomastia procedure before and after photos and our testimonials from patients who have had the procedure. Many of our male patients have stated how not only is the pain and tenderness gone, but they also feel more confident in their appearance. Contact us today to schedule a consultation or for information on our services.
We take pride in what patients say about us
I finally went for a consultation with Dr. Spiro after several other consultations and never looked back. First, Dr. Spiro’s office is meticulously clean and organized. He is running a tight ship, and it made me feel very good. Second, he showed me his past examples of before and after procedures and answered all my questions. Finally, when I decided to move ahead with the procedure, he and his team prepared me ahead of time with the instructions, encouragement and support. The surgery went great and the “before and after” is unbelievable! I am very happy with the results – the best decision I made! Dr Spiro is an amazing surgeon, a professional and an artist in his own right. He gave me so much confidence and I feel that I got my body back – even better than what I had before kids. I would recommend this doctor without any hesitation and also this procedure – it has changed my life.
Dr. Spiro and his staff explained all details of the surgery beforehand; he has a very comforting and kind attitude. I was pleasantly surprised that despite descriptions that I had read on the internet about patients’ experiences in other practices (you should never do this!) i did not experience any true pain once I left the hospital 24 hours or so after surgery. There was more what I would describe as discomfort, and only really for the first week. Dr. Spiro’s staff was available and attentive throughout the process and explained to me exactly what I should and should not do each week. Following all of Dr. Spiro’s advice, I was able to return to work about ten days after the operation, and was able to resume my daily activities, little by little, over the next six week. After six weeks I was running, swimming, hiking, and biking, without any discomfort. My stomach is amazingly flat and finally seems to fit with the rest of my body!
Dr. Spiro is an exceptional plastic surgeon and I am very grateful that he was recommended to me. I had two separate surgeries with him. I think this in itself speaks to the level of confidence I have for both him and his staff. The first surgery was in 2014 — an abdominoplasty (full tummy tuck). Dr. Spiro and his staff were extremely thorough in preparing me for this surgery as I had to first have a hysterectomy performed by my gynecologist with the tummy tuck immediately following. Since I am anemic, Dr. Spiro and his nurses made sure they monitored me very carefully before the surgery and worked directly with my blood management doctors at St. Barnabas.
I needed the hysterectomy due to my anemia, I was so happy with Dr. Spiro that I decided to have a second surgery in 2015, an auto-augmentation with breast lift. I had very large breasts for my body frame which prevented me from feeling comfortable and confident in my clothing. It has always been difficult buying clothes, especially exercise bras and bathing suits. Being the gifted surgeon that he is, Dr. Spiro explained that he had a wonderful surgical trick for women like me who have very full breasts: Without even using an implant, he was able to achieve a beautifully shaped new breast by using my existing breast tissue, with a lift. To say the least, I am absolutely thrilled with the results! I can’t say enough about Dr. Spiro and his entire staff. They are professional, compassionate, and I felt the level of care both pre and post-surgery was exceptional. Thank you,
Dear Dr Spiro & Team: It’s amazing to look back on this journey and admire the results of my recent tummy tuck. I feel like I am 29 all over again ! For me, this decision came after several years of losing 45 lbs post two children and recognizing that my 5-6/day wk workout and nutrition regimen was not going to show the hard work and results of my efforts. I also wanted a strong core to take me to my next level of fitness. After 4 consults, I finally confided in a friend that led me to Dr. Spiro. She raved about her own friends and family results, the attention to detail and level of personal care Dr Spiro brought to every case. What sets Dr Spiro apart are a few factors: the artistry plus medical expertise he offers, the time & effort he patiently explains with all options, and the concern about the overall patients health vs the cosmetic outcome. It was paramount to me that if I undertook a cosmetic procedure, that the scar would be minimized and that my health would not be compromised.
I could tell from the amount of pictures, testimonials and hands on experience, Dr Spiro was the right surgeon to accomplish the objective. Throughout the surgery preparation and recovery, my decision was further confirmed. The admissions facility unsolicitedly confirmed Dr Spiro was a perfectionist and I was in the right hands for a beautiful outcome. Additionally Dr Spiro and his staff personally checked up on me several times daily in the recovery and ensured I was actively following the nutrition and post op procedures for a fast, but safe recovery. At a week post op, I looked in the mirror and knew I had made the right decision. My c-section “tire” of loose skin was gone & I had a core tighter than 29. Within weeks, I was back to a size 4 dress I wore 20 yrs ago. At 6 week’s post op, I started cardio again. At 8 wks, I skied for 4 days straight. At 12 wks, I ran a 5k & finished in the top 10%. Cleared at 12wks to start weight training again, I am now looking forward to a summer of wearing bikinis on the beach with pride in my personal transformation. Thanks, Dr. Spiro & Team for your surgical skill, perfection and artistry you bring to the profession.