Gynecomastia is common, especially in adulthood, and the age of maturity and manhood, as 70% of men have gone through the problem of Gynecomastia, which is the increase of the breasts tissue-size from the standard rate.
Moreover, it reaches to the prolapse, a tumor-like swelling in the breast, in a manner that does not fit the body of the man making his appearance unsuitable.
Gynecomastia occurs due to many different factors like; changes in the body hormones, increase and deposition of breast fat or Endocrine proliferation, and there are two types of Gynecomastia:
- Homogeneous Gynecomastia for men: It means sagging and swelling in the size of the breasts, which is about the same amount.
- Non-homogenous Gynecomastia for men: where one of the breasts is swollen and slack, while the other remains in its same size and condition.
Gynecomastia itself, is not a severe problem at all, but the real danger relies on the tension and the psychological effect the patient will have to live in and face like; social and psychological problems, where the patient feels embarrassed by the self-imposed treatment of the society, which makes him lose his self-confidence of himself and his appearance, moreover, having to face the biggest fear of all; the potential of having cancer.
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Reasons for Gynecomastia
The problem of Gynecomastia is caused by the imbalance of Estrogen, Testosterone and Androgen hormones. Estrogen hormone controls breasts growth, Testosterone hormone controls male traits, and when a defect occurs in the hormones secretion, it leads to having Gynecomastia infection. It can affect one breast or two homogeneously.
There are many different health problems, which lead to Gynecomastia, due to its effects on the hormones such as; Estrogen and Androgen hormones such;
- Liver Problems: Such as hepatitis or cirrhosis, which leads to a change in the level of hormones, in addition to taking medical drugs for the treatment of hepatic fibrosis, which causes Gynecomastia.
- Malnutrition: which is not having the right amount of healthy nutrition, causing hormonal disorder, due to decreasing in Testosterone hormone levels, while the glands continue to secrete Estrogen hormone, and when re-feeding can occur Gynecomastia.
- Increased thyroid secretions of Thyroxin, which leads to an increase in the activity of the body, and increases the speed of work of all organs in the body, which occurs Gynecomastia in men.
- Genital disorders: interfere with the production of Testosterone, causing an imbalance in the hormones, and then lead to Gynecomastia.
- Kidney failure leads to changes in hormones, due to exposure to dialysis.
- Tumors such as testicular tumors, and Pituitary tumors, will lead to a change in hormonal balance, resulting in Gynecomastia.
- Taking some treatments and meds, where studies show 20% from Gynecomastia is caused by using medical drugs containing Estrogen, such as cancer treatment drugs, and gastric medication, such as Acidity and Ulcers, containing Cimetidine or Metoclopramide, or Antibiotics, triglyceride antidepressants, or medicines for heart disease treatment, which contains digoxin, or take the anti-Androgen used in prostate and prostate cancer treatment, also the antidepressant drugs, such as AIDS, a human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).
- Herbal products, which are involved in the installation of some kinds of shampoo, soap, like; tea tree oil, or lavender, in a way or another, that are related to the appearance of Gynecomastia problem, this is due to their weak Estrogen activity.
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The Risks of Gynecomastia to Men’s Health
Most medical studies have proven that Gynecomastia is not a serious phenomenon and does not pose real risks to men’s health, so if they are eliminated quickly, but if the problem continues more than 12 months, it can cause some health damages, therefore, the issues are not limited to the appearance and anxiety of the society’s opinion, and the embarrassment associated with Gynecomastia only, but it extends to the incidence of other serious diseases, such as; Diabetes, or lack of sexual desire, and so it does not become a cosmetic treatment only; moreover, it becomes a medical treatment too.
Over the past years, the doctors find that having Gynecomastia for a long time for men might put him under the risk of having breast cancer, five times more than men who have normal breast, not because of having Gynecomastia itself, rather than the harmonic change related to Gynecomastia, which might be an assistant factor to increase the potential of having breast cancer.
Treatment of Gynecomastia for Men
There are medical drugs to treat Gynecomastia, a group of drugs, which restore the harmonic balance of Estrogen and Testosterone; however, the data on their effectiveness is limited, and none of these drugs have been approved so far by the US Food and Drug Administration for Gynecomastia treatment; therefore, the Gynecomastia patient turns to Gynecomastia extraction operation, it is a simple operation done through one of the following three methods;
- Liposuction: It is performed to remove the adipose tissue under the breast, using specific techniques.
- Surgical removal: which is removing the Gynecomastia along with its glandular and greasy breast tissue, and it is used by telescope.
Gynecomastia is the third cosmetic operation that men do right after the Hair transplant and liposuction procedures.
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The patient goes to the doctor and discusses with him his health, and then learn about the Gynecomastia patient former health and therapeutic history, and the doctor will ask the patient to cut off the smoking; as it impedes blood flow in the veins, also to stop drinking alcohol; because it causes blood diluting during the operation, and to abstain from taking drugs that cause blood diluting such as; Aspirin, then they discuss the stages of Gynecomastia operation. The patient needs to know everything about the operation, the expected results after the procedure and the complications that might happen during the Gynecomastia operation.
Gynecomastia operation is performed by a few simple stapes:
- The doctor should examine the patient and record the detailed measurements of the breasts before the surgery.
- The patient then undergoes the operation of Gynecomastia where general anesthesia is used.
- Fat is removed by using specific techniques, which penetrate the layers of the skin, and then work to break up the fat tissues formed under the breast, and this step requires precision and high skill by the surgeon.
- The bandages are then placed on the chest, remain for two weeks, and then the patient enters the recovery stage after the operation.
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The History of Gynecomastia
The terminology of Gynecomastia first appeared in the second century BC, in the era of the Roman Empire, the philosopher Galen gave a description to the disease, called it Gynecomastia, right then the successful attempts to cure began, attempts to heal and surgical correction of this disease, by the Byzantine physician “Pauls”. Successful treatment attempts occurred in 1969, based on the contributions of Dr. Letterman and Dr. Schreter in this field. Liposuction techniques began to develop in the late 1970s, which contributed to the treatment of Gynecomastia.
There are many medical treatments to solve the problem of Gynecomastia, but the statement of effectiveness is limited, as men resorting to undergo Gynecomastia, it is considered one of the fastest and easiest treatments to solve this problem, as it is a simple cosmetic operation, it enables getting rid of the greasy tissues in the breast, and remove fat and the flabbiness, until the chest muscle appears coherent and consistent with the body shape, then the patient has to change his daily routine, and follow a new lifestyle, by developing a healthy balanced diet, and playing different types of sports.
Gynecomastia Post-Operation Side Effects
There are some simple side effects caused by Gynecomastia operation, like;
- Fatigue caused by the general anesthesia.
- Some bruises and blood-swelling appearance, which is one of the most common complications, because of the blood vessels contained in the breast, which are easy to injure, or wound during surgery, and can be disposed of by taking the necessary anti-bruising meds dictated by the doctor.
- Sensation changes and numbness feeling in the breast and the nipple area. Sensitivity may be reduced, or entirely absent, depending on the condition, lasting for a month, then gradually returning.
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In case the doctor has no experience and efficiency in the field of Gynecomastia, there is a significant possibility for some risks to show caused by the lack of his proficiency in performing this type of operations, and that’s why you need to choose your doctor wisely to avoid these risks. It is advisable to know the extent of the surgeon’s experience, he must have a high degree of competence and skill in the treatment of Gynecomastia, and that the doctor is fully aware of the therapeutic options available, and has dealt with many different cases before, potential risks such as;
- Skin sagging after breast suction.
- Leave scars and permanent pain in the breast.
- The risk of having a heart or a veins stroke.
- Skin color changes.
- Asymmetry or equal size of the breasts.
- Subcutaneous tissue damage, such as nerve or muscle damage.
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The Results of Gynecomastia Operation
The results of the operation show right after the surgery, and it leaves some minor scars that the doctor tries to avoid its appearance as much as possible. The final results appear once the bruises disappear for good.
The Cost of Gynecomastia
The cost of Gynecomastia for men start from USD 3.000, and it can reach in some cases, up to 15.000 USD, the price depends on the medical condition of the Gynecomastia patient, as well as the country where the operation takes place. Turkey offers this service at a lower cost than 70% of other developed European and American countries.
If you found in this article, the answers for all your questions and concerns, do share it with others, who have the same interest that you have, and help them know more about the treatment of Gynecomastia.