What is Gynecomastia? Things You Should Know About “Man Boobs”

Have you ever heard someone refer to enlarged male breasts as “man boobs”? If so, they are probably referencing a common condition known as gynecomastia. Read on to learn more about gynecomastia, the cause of gynecomastia, the best way to correct gynecomastia, and more.

What is Gynecomastia?

Gynecomastia, which is sometimes referred to as “man boobs”, is a condition in which males develop excess breast tissue. This male breast enlargement can affect one or both breasts in males of all ages, though many teenage boys experience it during puberty. In some cases, gynecomastia resolves on its own, however, sometimes it stays with males into adulthood. While this condition is not life-threatening, it can have a serious impact on a man’s self-esteem.

There are various different types of gynecomastia including:

True Gynecomastia: True gynecomastia is caused by enlarged breasts caused by excess glandular tissue. This is also often accompanied by swollen breast tissue and/or excess fat in the chest area.

Pseudogynecomatia: Also called false gynecomastia, pseudogynecomastia is caused by an excess of fatty tissue on the chest, along with a high percentage of overall body fat.

Drug-Induced Gynecomastia: Enlarged male breasts are caused by taking certain medications or illegal drugs.

What Causes Gynecomastia?

There are various possible causes of gynecomastia. The most common cause is a hormonal imbalance or hormonal changes involving androgens and estrogens. The use of certain recreational drugs and prescribed treatments may also contribute to gynecomastia including anti-androgens, anabolic steroids, certain anti-anxiety medications, stomach-emptying mediations, heart medications, and more.

How to Treat Gynecomastia in San Francisco

Overall, treatment options for gynecomastia are dependent on the underlying cause of the condition. In instances where gynecomastia does not resolve on its own, gynecomastia surgery, sometimes called male breast reduction surgery, is often the best permanent solution. This surgical procedure is performed under general anesthesia and involves the removal of excess glandular tissue, breast tissue, and fatty tissue to create a flatter, more masculine chest appearance. This is often an outpatient procedure, which means that you can return home following surgery to recover. Dr. Delgado will provide you with specific aftercare instructions regarding healing, including how to correctly wear your compression garment.

When considering gynecomastia surgery, it is imperative that you seek out a qualified and experienced plastic surgeon such as Dr. Delgado. He has treated thousands of individuals with gynecomastia, with many of those procedures being revision gynecomastia surgery. Dr. Delgado is also the medical director of Gynecomastia.org—the largest gynecomastia forum in the world which is a fantastic resource for those interested in learning more about gynecomastia and treatment options.

Schedule a Consultation in San Francisco

If you are interested in learning more about gynecomastia, or “man boobs”, your first step will be to schedule a one-on-one consultation with Dr. Delgado during which he will discuss your medical conditions and medical history to determine the best treatment journey for you. You can also schedule a virtual consultation if you do not live near Dr. Delgado’s office. As a board-certified plastic surgeon, Dr. Delgado specializes in treating all forms of gynecomastia to help males feel more comfortable and confident in their bodies.

Gynecomastia FAQs

Is gynecomastia surgery plastic surgery?

Yes, gynecomastia surgery is considered a cosmetic procedure and is often performed by a plastic surgeon. When seeking out a surgeon, be sure to do your research and seek out a board-certified surgeon.

What does the gynecomastia healing process look like?

The gynecomastia healing process is generally an easy one. To ensure optimal results, be sure to follow your doctor’s specific aftercare instructions regarding diet, exercise, bathing, and wearing your compression vest.

Does gynecomastia cause breast cancer?

The risk of male breast cancer is very low in the general population, and gynecomastia does not significantly increase this risk.

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Dr. Miguel Delgado


Dr. Delgado, MD is a world-recognized plastic surgeon and specialist in the treatment of male breast enlargement, also called gynecomastia. He has developed new techniques and owns and operates gynecomastia.org, which has become the largest gynecomastia forum in the world. Dr. Delgado holds the two most coveted credentials; the certification by the American Board of Plastic Surgery and membership in the American Society of Plastic Surgery.

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