What is Gynecomastia + Symptoms, Treatment Options and More

Gynecomastia in Northern Virginia

male model

If you’ve noticed swelling in your chest and are concerned about wearing fitted t-shirts or a swimsuit this summer, you may be suffering from a common male condition called gynecomastia.

In fact, approximately 50% of adolescent boys and as many as 2/3 of men older than 50 will experience this issue to some degree.

Continue reading to learn all about gynecomastia, including symptoms and treatment options.

What is Gynecomastia?

Gynecomastia in Northern Virginia is a condition that causes male breast tissue to enlarge and often presents during puberty or as a man ages.

It is typically caused by a hormonal imbalance between testosterone and estrogen, as the increased percentage of estrogen may lead breast tissue to swell in boys and men.

Though, most commonly, Gynecomastia refers to male breast enlargement from a mix of gland tissue and fat.

Other factors can contribute to the development of male breasts including:

  • Injury or diseases that affect the testicles, which make testosterone
  • Thyroid problems
  • Obesity
  • Certain cancers, including those affecting the lungs, pituitary gland or adrenal glands
  • Some medications, including those that are used to treat heart disease, cancer, depression, or ulcers

What Are Symptoms of Gynecomastia?

For most men, symptoms initially present as a lump of fatty tissue under the nipple of the breast.

While the lump sometimes feels hard to the touch, it is usually not indicative of cancer. However, it is prudent to send a large gland to the laboratory.

In addition, men may notice swelling of the chest that occurs unevenly, meaning that one breast becomes larger than the other.

Gynecomastia Treatment Options

Often times, gynecomastia resolves on its own. In other cases, patients may be referred to an endocrinologist for further assessment of hormone levels. 

If the endocrinologist detects a hormone imbalance, he may prescribe medication to help normalize levels.

Surgery is another viable treatment option. Liposuction can eliminate extra breast fat, and a mastectomy can remove breast gland tissue to sculpt a flatter, more masculine chest appearance.

Schedule a Consult for Gynecomastia in Northern Virginia

For additional information about gynecomastia symptoms and treatment options, please contact our office today to schedule a comprehensive consultation with board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Shlomo Widder.