DOES YOUR SON HAVE MAN BOOBS?

DOES YOUR SON HAVE MAN BOOBS?

When I was in medical school, I would come home and tell my husband about various conditions I learned about that day. He quickly developed a rotating list of his “top three greatest fears.” Gynecomastia was a regular in the top three.

Gynecomastia is a benign increase in the size of male breast tissue; man boobs, if you will. It’s one of those things that no boy wants to talk about, but it’s actually pretty common, and it causes a lot of stress. In pediatrics, it happens at two different times in a boy’s life. First, it happens at birth. Most newborn males have some firm tissue under the nipples. This is a result of circulating maternal hormones. It typically resolves within a few months and causes no long-term problems. The second time is in adolescence. In fact, up to 70% of adolescent boys will experience some gynecomastia. The reason is also related to the hormones (but those from puberty). It typically takes 6 months to two years to resolve. It is more common in overweight boys. Fat makes estrogen. If you have too much estrogen, you’ll get more breast tissue. The development of gynecomastia may be a good motivator in helping your son, if he is overweight, lose a few pounds. The tissue with gynecomastia will feel rubbery or firm. There is no treatment for it, just reassure your son that it is normal and will go away with time.

Of note, certain medications (e.g., steroids, seizure medications) and some medical conditions (like Klinefelter syndrome) can cause gynecomastia. So, if your son is taking medications or has other associated symptoms, talk with your doctor about it.

-Photos courtesy of www.123rf.com

Some of the Products I Love

BOOSTER SEATS: THE FACTS AND MY FAVES

One of the questions I get a lot include, "What is the best booster seat?" and "What are the top-rated booster seats?" Here's what I know, and what I use: Booster seats are car seats designed to be used by children between the ages of 4-8 years-old. The seat belt in a...

10 THINGS YOU SHOULD HAVE IN YOUR MEDICINE CABINET

Everyone should have a few common, key items in their medicine cabinet. These few items should help in a pinch, and save you from making trips to the store in the middle of the night. Here are the must haves to any medicine cabinet: Tylenol (generic is acetaminophen)....

SHOULD I BUY A BREAST PUMP?

If you are having a baby and planning on breastfeeding, you may want to consider buying a breast pump. The most valuable time to have a breast pump is generally in the first few days after having a baby. So if you’re going to invest in one, do so early. Consider...

About The Author

Dr. Monica Wonnacott

I'm a pediatrician and a mom. I've been doing this doctor thing for 10 years, and love it. I'm known for giving parents the straight scoop without always sugar-coating it. And I believe in educating parents. The more you know, the better care you give your kids.

Dr. Monica Wonnacott


I'm a pediatrician and a mom. PediatricAnswers.com is my blog where parents can get the straight scoop on their child's health, largely based on my experience in the office and at home. I don't diagnose on the site, so please don't ask. These are just my opinions. Use this site as a resource. And trust your parent gut.

Subscribe Now

Share This

HAVE YOU SIGNED UP FOR MY NEWSLETTER?

I send out a free newsletter with some of the articles and recommendations from the site. If you haven't already, please subscribe...and share with your friends on Facebook.

Thanks for subscribing. You'll start getting my newsletter soon.