Gynecomastia, often referred to derisively as ‘man-boobs’, is endemic in the United States. While gynecomastia can be associated with excess body mass and obesity, many males I see for gynecomastia reduction surgery are not overweight, but simply have experienced the spontaneous proliferation of fibrous breast tissue on one or both sides of their chest, for reasons that medical science currently cannot fully explain. Some males have fullness of the overall breast area, while others have exclusively enlarged glands or puffy nipples.
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For young men and teens with gynecomastia, the problem can create a vicious cycle of self-consciousness and social withdrawal. With breast area enlargement, a boy gradually becomes insecure about his appearance without a shirt on or even in workout clothing. They begin to avoid social situations in which their chest appearance is obvious (the gym, the pool, pickup games), and sometimes come to avoid sporting activity of any kind. This can potentially damage their psychosocial development and has a profoundly negative effect on their sense of well-being and quality of life. Many young men will wonder, Why Do I Have Gynecomastia?
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It certainly is possible that some gynecomastia may improve without surgical intervention after a few years, particularly in very young teens. However, if my own sons had gynecomastia that persisted beyond two years, particularly if they are fifteen or over, I would certainly support their decision to go forward with this surgery.
Gynecomastia correction surgery is the only surgery I perform on teens. I hear stories of young men who wear as many as four shirts during the heat of summer to camouflage fullness in their chest that makes them feel self-conscious. One parent shared with me that her son was selecting colleges based on the school colors. He only wanted to attend a college where the school colors included black, navy or dark green.
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I have seen young men work out too hard and injure themselves, hoping that building muscle will be a distraction from gynecomastia. Others reduce calories so much that they risk a health problem. There is no diet, workout program or pill to eliminate gynecomastia. if gynecomastia persists for a year or more, it may be time to consider Surgical Treatment for Gynecomastia Some parents want the best for their sons’ but they do not realize that gynecomastia is not fat and that the only proven way to eliminate gynecomastia is with surgical correction.