Gynecomastia is the pathological increase of one or both mammary glands in a man. This dysfunction is usually associated to a hyperprolactinemia (excess of prolactin in the blood that is also synthesized in men).
Men that are under treatment with estrogens can develop clusters of fat in the form of breasts, what is known as pseudogynecomastia, but developing real breasts is frequent and this is known as gynecomastia. It is the most frequent mammary pathology in the male sex. Obese men also usually develop a pseudogynecomastia. Sometimes it can appear in persons that take certain medicines, as a secondary effect, like in the case of anabolic steroids.
Gynecomastia literally means “womans’ breast”. This increase of tissue usually appears in periods in which men suffer hormonal changes, like childhood, adolescence and old age.
There is different classifications of degrees of gynecomastia. One of said classifications is the following:
Grade I Gynecomastia – A slight increase of the tissue of the breast is observed without extra skin.
Grade II Gynecomastia – A moderate increase of the breast can be observed with or without extra skin.
Grade III Gynecomastia – An unusual increase of the breast is observed with extra skin. Source: Instituto Medico Miramar