man boobs - gynecomastia

Let’s talk about man boobs —what they are and why some men have them.

Although some develop without any known cause, there are several common reasons man boobs develop, including:

  • Genetics
  • Obesity
  • Weight fluctuations
  • Increase in estrogen level
  • Decrease in testosterone level
  • Anabolic steroid use
  • Chronic kidney or liver disease
  • HIV infection
  • Drug or alcohol use

It is important to understand that man boobs ( male breast development/gynecomastia) occur in men who are slim, as well as those who are overweight. It can be present in both or just one breast.

Who should consider surgery to reduce male boobs?

Many of my male patients who have enlarged chests tell me that they shy about removing their shirts in public—whether at the gym or beach, exercising, or participating in sports—because they are embarrassed by how their chests  appear. Many were teased as children and the stigma of that remains into adulthood.

Still other patients who have never had an issue, now want to enhance their aesthetic body proportions by reducing their chest size or making them more symmetrical.

What’s involved in surgery to reduce man boobs?

Gynecomastia surgery removes glandular tissue, skin, and excess breast fat, as needed. Depending on your specific situation, I use a variety of techniques, oftentimes including liposuction, to achieve the best results for you.

No opioids! I don’t believe in the need for narcotics. Instead, I use a combination of drug therapies pre- during and post-surgery that minimize discomfort without the need for opioids.

It’s time to take off your shirt!

Summer is here and the beach is calling. Feel good about taking off your shirt! Schedule your confidential consultation now. Please contact my patient coordinators by calling 312.757.4505 or sending an email to us at

Have questions you want answered anonymously?

I am a frequent contributor to You’re welcome to post questions there for general responses. Obviously, I can’t give specific answers; for that, you’ll want to come in for a private and completely confidential appointment to address your particular issues.

Located in Chicago’s Lincoln Park, our offices are a warm, friendly and comfortable place to share your wants, needs and concerns.

Lawrence Iteld, MD