Gynecomastia, or the condition of having female-like breasts in a man, is a common condition afflicting millions of men worldwide. It is caused by an imbalance of the sex hormones testosterone and estrogen, it’s a harmless medical condition, but the mental consequences are very real. It is most often caused by an imbalance of hormones around the time of puberty or developed after the use of substances in bodybuilding, fitness, or anti-aging.
Chest enlargement and puffy nipples are the cardinal features of gynecomastia. Pain is not typically described as a common feature, but it does happen. What does gynecomastia pain indicate? Is this something to worry about? Does it mean you may have cancer? How is it treated? What should you do if you have painful gynecomastia? Is this pain treated by removal of the tissue?
Painful gynecomastia indicates that the tissue behind your nipples is inflamed. The cause of the inflammation is substances activating gynecomastia tissue. This could be your own natural body hormones or substances that you are taking for various purposes—even doctor prescribed medications but often prohormones or hormones used for enhanced fitness.
Gynecomastia pain can be on both sides or just on one side. The pain comes on over time (weeks or months) and can be bothersome and concerning. Touching the chest can be painful. Anything that rubs on your chest can cause pain. Fortunately, the pain typically subsides over a period of several months. It’s uncommon for someone to have pain for more than a year.
The painful gynecomastia treatment involves the removal of the tissue—all the tissue, particularly under the nipple-areola complexes where gynecomastia tissue originates and is typically glandular and susceptible to hormone imbalances. The tissue is responsible for the pain and once it is removed there will no longer be pain. Treatment of painful gynecomastia with an anti-estrogen medication is possible as it will provide for pain relief, but it will not make the issue go away.
Breast cancer in males is quite uncommon and it is not associated with gynecomastia. Breast cancer is typically not painful. Special lab studies or radiology scans are not helpful in the diagnosis or treatment of painful gynecomastia as the diagnosis is made clinically and the treatment is surgery or waiting long enough for the pain to subside naturally over time.
Painful gynecomastia is uncommon, generally short in duration, related to substances taken or hormonal changes, is usually self-limiting as the pain will subside after months and is cured with surgery.
Our team at AGC is here to answer your questions, assist with scheduling your appointment, or help you with any other matters related to your treatment. Book your consultation online for specific questions regarding a personalized surgical plan.
A further detailed discussion with Dr. Caridi and his team will follow this inquiry. If you are seeking more general information or are a previous patient needing to contact medical staff, always feel free to call our office.
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