'Moob' operations double in five years as men turn to surgery to get rid of male breastsFigures show 790 men underwent the
procedure to remove their 'moobs' last yearFive years ago it was half that figureExperts say it is down to a rise in obesity and an imbalance in male sex hormones
13:59 GMT, 28 November 2012
The number of men going under the knife to rid themselves of so called 'man boobs' has doubled in five years.
Experts have put the rise in the removal of the excess tissue growth – dubbed moobs – to a rise in obesity, an imbalance in male sex hormones, and a more open attitude to cosmetic surgery for men.
Thousands of men in the UK are developing the condition, known as gynaecomastia.
Before and after: Ayo Adesina, ahead of the surgery which 'changed his life' (left) and now (right)
Figures from the British Association
of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (BAAPS) show 790 men underwent the
procedure to remove their 'moobs' in 2011.
Five years ago it was half that figure.
For many the condition causes embarrassment and discomfort – particular as in the majority of cases it develops in adolescent boys around the time of puberty
But figures say that at least 30 per cent of those who have it are older men.
It is often assumed that gynaecomastia is simply linked to obesity – but there are other causes as well.
The condition can be provoked by an imbalance of the sex hormones oestrogen and testosterone, and can also be triggered by certain medication like antidepressants, heart and liver pills.
It has also been linked to some cancer drugs which cut levels of male hormones, and there is also evidence that anabolic steroids can cause further breast tissue growth.
Some experts have also attributed it to rising levels of female hormones in the environment can also play a part.
For Ayo Adesina, the surgery changed his life, having not just changed him physically but psychologically also.
The 29-year-old developed gynaecostima as an eight year old child and became so paranoid about his appearance as he grew up, he decided to pay for the surgery privately at the Riverbanks Clinic.
As a young man he had been subjected to taunts about his 'man boobs'.
Before: Ayo Adesina, ahead of the surgery which he said changed his life
After: The 29-year-old developed gynaecostima as an eight year old child and became so paranoid he paid for surgery
He said: 'I'm very happy indeed with the results. I don't have an Arnold Schwarzenegger body, but I think it's made me even more determined to have the body that I would like and I think I'm on a level playing field with everybody else.'
Dr Ravi Jain of Riverbanks Clinic, who performed the surgery, said a recent poll on his patients showed 60 per cent had received nasty comments about their chests before they went under the knife.
He said: 'Having read recent research that showed men would gladly exchange a year of their lives for an attractive physique, I was inspired to poll my own patients and see if they had experienced benefits beyond just the physical after their treatment in the last year.
'I always suspected this was the case and thus am very pleased with the changes this survey highlights.
'Being able to show off a new figure in your favourite clothes can transform the way you carry yourself, and in turn boost not just looks but overall self-esteem.'
'MOOB' QUESTIONS ANSWERED BY DR ELLIE CANNON
Isn’t gynaecomastia just a fancy name for ‘moobs’
Weight gain in the chest area in men can sometimes resemble breasts and is usually a result of obesity.
Weight loss can often remedy the problem. True gynaecomastia is the growth of breast tissue due to an imbalance of sex hormones.
Testosterone wanes in old age so the
condition is common in over-70s. It can also occur during puberty, and
as a result of diseases such as liver cirrhosis, testicular cancer,
kidney failure and an overactive thyroid. In a fifth of cases it’s
caused by medication.
What medication causes the condition
Drugs such as digoxin, amiodarone and
amlodipine, used for high blood pressure. Anti-psychotic drugs for many
mental health problems are a cause, as is anything that interferes with
testosterone, including drugs for prostate problems.
Can the condition be treated
Initially, treatment focuses on the underlying cause – replacing the
testosterone. Drugs to inhibit the hormones such as the breast cancer
drug tamoxifen are used with a relative degree of success. Where
treatment fails, surgery may be the only option.