How do I know if I really have gynecomastia?
Eating fast-food almost daily has left me with what I think is called gynecomastia... or man boobs. But they are not that prominent. How do I know if I truly have gynecomastia or just puffy nipples? I can't ask my friends to show me their chest to see how different theres is, but I feel that something is a bit strange with mine. Does exercising do any good?
While there are self-tests which involve feeling your nipples for firm tissue underneath, an accurate diagnosis for gynecomastia requires a physical examination.
During your examination, your doctor may perform an ultrasound which can easily differentiate between glandular breast enlargement and simple fatty tissue.
Your physician may also test your blood to assist in a gynecomastia diagnosis. These blood tests may include liver function tests and tests for female hormone levels, estradiol, testosterone levels and luteinizing hormone -- any of which may indicate more serious issues of which gynecomastia is a side effect.
Even if you only have excess chest fat and no glandular development, diet and exercise alone may be enough. Excess chest fat can be extremely difficult to lose. There are male breast reduction options which can reduce enlarged breasts regardless of the underlying cause.
I suggest you consult with a board-certified plastic surgeon to discuss the options available to you.
The difference between excess fat which looks like gynecomastia (pseudogynecomastia) and true gynecomastia depends on the presence of excess glandular tissue within the male breast.
It’s not clear how old you are from your question, but it’s common for young men to experience hormonal changes during their teen years which may result in pubertal gynecomastia and puffy nipples. But it is also extremely common for men -- particularly overweight men -- to put on fat deposits which mimic gynecomastia.
Differentiating between the two can be difficult. Generally speaking, glandular tissue feels firmer and body fat feels soft. In many cases both excess fat and gland hypertrophy are present at the same time. Your plastic surgeon will easily be able to tell the difference during a consultation.
It doesn’t necessarily matter what the underlying issue is, however.
Regardless of whether you have excess chest fat or true gynecomastia due to glandular development -- we can restore a normal male chest contour by either liposuction or excision in either case.
Both treatments are simple, fast, safe and effective. If your man boobs are bothering you, I encourage you to contact a board-certified plastic surgeon to discuss available treatment options.