Home > Health A – Z > Gynecomastia


The abnormal growth of breast gland tissue in males.

PubMed Health Glossary
(Source: NIH - National Cancer Institute)

About Gynecomastia

Gynecomastia in infants and boys may be caused by an imbalance in certain hormones.

It may also be caused by conditions that affect hormones, such as tumors; malnutrition; kidney, liver, or thyroid disease; or treatment with certain drugs.

It can occur at any age. NIH - National Cancer Institute

What works? Research summarized

Evidence reviews

Tamoxifen therapy for the management of pubertal gynecomastia: a systematic review

OBJECTIVE: A systematic review to assess the efficacy of tamoxifen in the management of idiopathic pubertal gynecomastia.

Optimal prophylactic and definitive therapy for bicalutamide-induced gynecomastia: results of a meta-analysis

OBJECTIVE: Bicalutamide is approved as an adjuvant to primary treatments (radical prostatectomy or radiotherapy) or as monotherapy in men with locally advanced, nonmetastatic prostate cancer (pca). However, this treatment induces gynecomastia in most patients, which often results in treatment discontinuation. Optimal therapy for these breast events is not known so far. We undertook a meta-analysis to assess the efficacy of various treatment options for bicalutamide-induced gynecomastia.

Prevention of gynecomastia and breast pain caused by androgen deprivation therapy in prostate cancer: tamoxifen or radiotherapy?

PURPOSE: To determine, in a meta-analysis, whether gynecomastia and breast pain rates in men with prostate cancer treated with androgen deprivation therapy (ADT) are reduced if treated with prophylactic radiotherapy (RT) or tamoxifen (TMX).

See all (38)

Summaries for consumers

Aldosterone antagonists for preventing the progression of chronic kidney disease

People who have chronic kidney disease (CKD) are at increased risk of heart disease and worsening kidney disease needing treatment with dialysis or a kidney transplant. Increased amounts of protein in the urine are a sign of kidney stress and are linked to a greater chance of worsening kidney function. Treatments that lower urine protein levels and protect kidney function are available and include angiotensin‐converting enzyme inhibitors and angiotensin receptor blockers. However, protection of kidney function with these two drugs may be incomplete and adding aldosterone blockers (for example, spironolactone or eplerenone) may better protect kidney function. The use of numerous drugs may also increase side‐effects. This review of available trials showed that adding aldosterone antagonist treatment to standard therapy reduced protein release into the urine and lowered blood pressure but had uncertain effects on kidney function and survival. Treatment also increases the amount of potassium in the blood which may require treatment changes, extra blood tests and is potentially harmful. Whether aldosterone blockers protect kidney function to lower the chances needing dialysis or kidney transplantation or prevent heart disease in people who have CKD is unclear and not answered by existing research.

Treatment for POEMS syndrome (polyneuropathy, organomegaly, endocrinopathy, M‐protein, and skin changes)

POEMS syndrome is a rare disorder of the blood which can cause a polyneuropathy (nerve symptoms such as numbness, tingling, pain, and muscle weakness) but can also involve many of the organs of the body, causing enlarged organs or organomegaly (usually liver, spleen, and lymph nodes), changes in hormone production or endocrinopathy (gynecomastia in men), abnormal blood protein (M‐protein), and skin changes such as increased pigmentation or skin thickening. Its cause is not known. The quality of life of people with POEMS deteriorates because of progressive neuropathy, and accumulation of fluid in the limbs or in the abdominal cavity or cavity around the lungs. It is a potentially fatal disease, and serious complications can arise due to multiorgan failure. There is no established treatment regimen, but potentially effective treatments that have been tried include chemotherapy, irradiation, corticosteroids, thalidomide or lenalidomide, and blood stem cell transplantation. This review found no randomized controlled trials of treatments for POEMS syndrome. Prospective treatment trials are needed to establish the relative values of different treatments.

Neo‐adjuvant and adjuvant hormone therapy for localised and locally advanced prostate cancer

The management of early prostate cancer is one of the most controversial areas in the field of cancer medicine with surgery, radiotherapy, primary hormonal therapy (achieved either by medication or by the surgical removal of the testes ‐ orchidectomy) and watchful waiting, all being acceptable forms of initial treatment. Treatment decision making is often based on patient and provider preferences taking into account the risks and benefits of therapies and disease progression. Since prostate cancer is driven, in part by male sex hormones, the use of hormonal treatment to reduce the level of circulating male hormones is a potentially very useful method of treating all stages of this disease. Recently, research on the use of such hormonal therapy in combination with both surgery and radiotherapy has increased. This systematic review combines the results of all the important trials looking at the role of hormones in combination with surgery and radiotherapy for localised and locally advanced prostate cancer.

See all (7)

More about Gynecomastia

Photo of a young adult man

Also called: Gynaecomastia, Gynaecomazia, Gynecomazia

See Also: Klinefelter Syndrome

Other terms to know:
Hormones, Male Breast

Keep up with systematic reviews on Gynecomastia:

Create RSS

PubMed Health Blog...

read all...