Gynecomastia is swelling of breast tissue in boys or men caused by an imbalance of the hormones estrogen and testosterone.

Hormonal disorder may affect one or both breasts, sometimes unevenly.

Newborns, boys going through puberty develop gynecomastia as a result of the usual changes in hormone levels, although other causes also exist.

In general, breast enlargement in men is not a serious problem.

But affected men and boys sometimes have pain in their chest and may feel uncomfortable.

The condition may go away on its own. But if this does not happen, medication is prescribed or surgical treatment is applied.

What are the symptoms?

• Swelling of mammary tissue in men, boys and newborns;
• Breast tenderness;

When to seek medical help?

• For swelling;
• Pain;
• Tenderness or discharge from one or both breasts;

What are the causes?

Breast enlargement in men occurs due to a change in the ratio between testosterone levels, which decrease at the expense of estrogen.

The reasons for this decrease can be conditions that block the action of testosterone or cause a decrease in its levels.

Another possible primary cause is conditions that lead to increased estrogen levels.

Natural hormonal changes

• The hormones testosterone and estrogen control the development and maintenance of secondary sexual characteristics in both males and females.

Androgens are responsible for male characteristics such as muscle mass and body hair.

Estrogen supports female sexual characteristics, including breast growth.

• Most people think that estrogens are only female hormones, but men also produce them, albeit in small amounts.

But if estrogen levels are too high or out of proportion with testosterone levels they can cause breast enlargement.

Gynecomastia in infants – more than half of baby boys are born with enlarged breasts due to the action of their mother’s estrogens. Breast tissue swelling usually resolves on its own within 2 to 3 weeks after delivery.

Breast enlargement during puberty is a common condition that is due to the hormonal changes during this stage of development of the male body. In most cases, the breasts return to normal size without treatment in about 6 months to 2 years.

• The appearance of female-specific breast enlargement peaks between the ages of 50 and 80, with at least 1 in 4 men in this age group experiencing the condition.


Some medications can also cause breast swelling in men:

Antiandrogens used to treat prostate enlargement, prostate cancer, and other conditions. Examples of such drugs are flutamide, finasteride and spironolactone.

• Anabolic steroids and androgens;

• Medicines used to treat anxiety disorders such as diazepam;

• Tricyclic antidepressants;

• Antibiotics;

Treatment of gynecomastia

In most cases, swollen breasts regress over time.

However, if the condition is due to a disease such as hypogonadism, malnutrition or cirrhosis, treatment should be prescribed.

If the patient is taking medications that can cause gynecomastia, it is recommended to stop them or replace them with another medication.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Check Also
Back to top button