Pseudogynecomastia or Gynecomastia?
By definition, something that is "pseudo" is fake, unreal or deceptive in its appearance, but there is nothing false or spurious about pseudogynecomastia. Like gynecomastia, this form of male breast enlargement is a tangible issue with concrete, physical symptoms. Its ability to negatively impact a man's body image and self-esteem is also equally real. What defines these two medical conditions? What treatments can doctors offer to men struggling with them? If you are one of the many men confronted with one of these conditions, what can you do to feel more comfortable in your skin?
Unwelcome Curves: Gynecomastia & Pseudogynecomastia
Popular culture preaches that full, lush breasts are an integral part of a woman's sex appeal. It is no secret that women often struggle with the impact that their chest size has on both their own self-image. However, feeling insecure about the appearance of your chest is not just a woman's prerogative. If you are a man who worries about how your breasts measure up to the traditional ideal for your gender, you are not alone.
When adolescent and adult males look at their chest in the mirror, they do not always see a muscular, masculine contour. Instead, many see unwelcome curves in the form of fuller breasts that look vaguely feminine. While a layperson might diagnose the problem as man boobs or moobs, doctors use other terms when referring to male breast enlargement.
Gynecomastia is male breast enlargement resulting from an excessive accumulation of glandular tissue in a man's chest area. It is normally the result of imbalances of crucial hormones like testosterone, estrogens and androgens. A variety of health issues and choices can prompt these imbalances, including puberty and certain health conditions involving the liver, thyroid, kidneys, adrenal glands, testes or other systems. The medications and treatments used to control or cure some health conditions can also set the stage for hormonal fluctuations. Behaviors like engaging in illicit drug use or heavy alcohol consumption can also contribute to the problem. Whatever its cause, this hormonal imbalance spurs the growth of extra glandular tissue in the chest region. Firm and fibrous, this tissue can feel like a rubbery lump beneath the skin. Its presence produces a swollen, puffy nipple and a visible enlargement of the breast. It may affect either one or both of your breasts. You may also experience sensitivity or tenderness in the area. At first glance, pseudogynecomastia seems like an identical condition. However, this form of male breast enlargement has a different cause: fat. Instead of glandular tissue, fat deposits accumulate around the pectoral muscles and below the areolas, the dark circles surrounding the nipples. This buildup of stubborn fat produces a noticeable curve, large areola and puffy, swollen nipple. In most cases, pseudogynecomastia's effects are bilateral, which means that it tends to affect both breasts equally.
Possible Treatment Options
While they may have similar symptoms, the differences in their causes mean that these conditions respond best to different treatments. Getting a proper diagnosis is vital. Gynecomastia can resolve on its own without any intervention, particularly in adolescents. However, often it takes between six and 24 months to clear. When medical care is necessary, it generally begins with treatments aimed at clearing the underlying condition causing your hormonal imbalance. If that fails to produce the desired results, your doctor may suggest surgery to excise the glandular tissue and remove any excess skin or fat from the area. While glandular tissue does not respond to diet or exercise regimens, fat does. If you are dealing with pseudogynecomastia, your doctor may first recommend shedding any extra pounds that you are carrying. They are also likely to suggest specific exercises and weightlifting techniques that work and tone the chest region. When these noninvasive measures are ineffective, liposuction can remove stubborn fat deposits from around, behind or underneath the nipples to sculpt the area and improve your chest's contour. If unusually large areolas or saggy skin is an issue, cosmetic surgery is an option for correcting those issues.
Simple Solutions for Gynecomastia & Pseudogynecomastia
Has your doctor told you to wait and see if your condition will resolve on its own? Is your breast enlargement bad enough to cause self-consciousness but too mild to require serious treatment? Does surgery seem too extreme, expensive or risky? Gynecomastia's effects cannot be erased on your lunch hour. Even if you choose to seek medical care for male breast enlargement, any treatment path that you follow will take time to produce results. Fortunately, there is an easy way to secure a reasonable level of support and concealment that can help you feel more comfortable in your skin: bodywear. Functional undergarments that provide a smooth foundation for your clothing, bodywear is a simple, effective solution to many woes, including male breast enlargement. At Confidence Bodywear offers high-quality products specifically designed to defeat gynecomastia and pseudogynecomastia so that you can face each day confidently.