What about smoking weed and Gynecomastia? A sneaky photographer recently caught rap superstar Snoop Dogg smoking a blunt right before going on-stage for the 2022 Super Bowl halftime show.
For those who don’t know, a blunt is when marijuana is placed inside a hollowed-out cigar and smoked.
As of this writing, eighteen states have legalized marijuana. And according to a Gallup poll from 2019, 12% of U.S. adults say they regularly smoke it.
It’s clear that the use of cannabis, which also goes by other names like marijuana, weed, and pot, is becoming widespread. This is the case despite weed’s illegality in some parts of the country and in other countries throughout the world.
With so many using cannabis, it must be safe, right?
According to the Mayo Clinic, cannabis is considered safe. But that doesn’t mean that cannabis does not have side effects. Smoking weed and gynecomastia seem to be related, for example.
There are several ways to use cannabis, including smoking, eating, and vaping.
Side effects of cannabis can include impaired memory, changes in mood, and paranoia, to name a few.
One potential side effect of consuming cannabis not often mentioned is the growth of male breast tissue.
Otherwise referred to by the medical term gynecomastia syndrome, or colloquially as man boobs, this condition can be psychologically traumatizing if it happens to you.
The good news is that treatment is available, and it may not involve having to give up cannabis if that concern crossed your mind.
Do you find yourself asking, “Where Can I Find Treatment for Gynecomastia Near Me?” – Schedule Now with the Gynecomastia Center of Los Angeles
What is Gynecomastia Syndrome and How is it Affected by Weed?
Contrary to popular belief, gynecomastia is not caused by an overabundance of fat. Fluctuating hormone levels may cause enlarged male breasts. Once these fluctuations are triggered, man boobs can result.
We are all born with estrogen and testosterone. During puberty, boys get an influx of testosterone, which produces male features like deepening the voice, facial hair, and height.
Females get a fluctuation of estrogen, which produces female characteristics like wide child-bearing hips, a higher voice, and breasts.
When hormones fluctuate the other way, men can grow breasts, and women can grow facial hair, to use two examples.
In the case of men growing breasts, it’s not just men. Infants can develop gynecomastia out of the womb, which usually subsists on its own. Teenagers can also develop the condition during puberty, which is somewhat common. Teen boys can also find their gyno effects diminishing with time. Not always.
For some boys, gynecomastia follows them into adulthood, sometimes leading to some psychological trauma of varying degrees.
Older men can develop gynecomastia as testosterone naturally declines with age.
Gynecomastia can also be caused by hormone spikes caused by medications, disease, steroids, malnutrition, and organ failure.
For weed to be the primary culprit for your gynecomastia problem, you would need to have a full examination by a gynecomastia doctor.
That examination and the results they glean will help to rule out all other causes before cannabis can be deemed the culprit for your man boobs.
Smoking weed or consuming it in other forms can cause estrogen spikes. The NIH (National Institutes of Health) found that using marijuana causes estrogen to rise and testosterone production to fall. This recipe is needed for male breasts to expand beyond normal levels.
Experts aren’t 100% sure why cannabis consumption leads to gynecomastia. The theory is that THC, the psychoactive component in cannabis, blocks the release of the hormone GnRH, which triggers testosterone production. Smoking weed and gynecomastia are related.
We have not seen any formal studies on THC and gynecomastia in humans. The NIH only has data on animal studies for now. Those studies do show a link between the THC compound and a decrease in testosterone. They also see sperm abnormalities.
Anecdotally, gynecomastia doctors in states where cannabis has been legalized are complaining that gynecomastia cases have gone up, with gynecomastia surgery increasing by 8% in the legal state of Colorado alone.
How is Gynecomastia Treated?
The best way doctors have of treating gynecomastia is through surgery. Male breast reduction surgery, also called gynecomastia surgery, involves glandular tissue removal, liposuction in many cases, and nipple correction for some.
The surgeon may also have to remove skin tissue that has grown beyond the sides of the chest. The type of gynecomastia surgery you require will be determined by your surgeon following an examination.
You should know that there are two primary types of gynecomastia syndrome. There is the type we have discussed so far that involves a hormonal imbalance. There is also a type that is composed merely of fatty tissue. This is known as pseudogynecomastia because the effects mimic the real thing.
While you should only allow gynecomastia doctors to diagnose your condition officially, you can perform a self-examination to determine your gynecomastia type.
Pseudogynecomastia is nothing but fat and skin.
Regular gynecomastia is identified by a flat disc of glandular tissue that usually grows beneath the areola. You can usually move it around with your finger. That is the tissue that will need to be removed through gynecomastia surgery.
If you suffer from pseudogynecomastia, liposuction may be the only treatment you require to return your chest to a flatter shape. If you have puffy nipples, nipple correction can return a natural look and symmetry to your chest.
If you suffer from regular gynecomastia, you may find yourself undergoing glandular tissue removal, liposuction, excess skin removal, and nipple correction or only one of the above This surgery is highly customizable to address any concerns you may have about your excess breast growth.
How is Male Breast Reduction Surgery Performed?
Once you have been diagnosed with gynecomastia or pseudogynecomastia, you decide to opt for surgery. The procedure is safe and effective for normalizing your chest contours.
During your initial consultation with a gynecomastia specialist,
you will be informed about the procedure, the risks involved, and the benefits of undergoing male breast reduction surgery.
The Gynecomastia Procedure
Surgery is performed under general anesthesia, though some surgeons may instead decide to use a local anesthetic plus oral sedation.
You will most likely go home the same day, so it is always best to plan for a ride home.
During the procedure, and after you are sedated, the gynecomastia specialist will make small incisions along the sides of the chest.
Does Gynecomastia Surgery Leave Scars?
Many men who undergo gynecomastia worry about scarring along the chest area. The entire purpose of having surgery for most guys is to be able to take off your shirt at the beach or poolside with abandon.
At the very least, they want to feel confident about their chest appearance. Massive scars along the chest would defeat the purpose.
One of the benefits of gyno surgery is that it is considered cosmetic in nature. Your surgeon uses both technique and skill to improve your contours and achieve symmetry. The idea is to give you natural results without a hint that you had a procedure done for dramatically improved results .
As such, gynecomastia doctors will usually work to hide the incisions made within the natural folds of your body. These include the areas under your arm, where your skin naturally creases. When the incisions are hidden there, even when healed, they will hardly be noticeable.
There are instances where scarring is inevitable, such as when gynecomastia has reached extreme levels. When there is excess skin to be removed along the sides of the chest, there will be scars when the excision marks heal.
Any scarring that does result should heal somewhat. You can also minimize healed scars further such as creams, lotions, and laser treatments.
Glandular Tissue Removal
Gynecomastia surgery that involves the removal of glandular tissue is performed laparoscopically. Small incisions act as entry points for a scoped camera. The camera has a light attached. Other incisions are used to insert other tools, such as a cutting device, used to remove the excess breast gland.
Sagging skin along the sides and front of the chest can be cut away during a gynecomastia procedure. This technique is called excision.
The tissue is cut away before the remaining tissue is stretched and tightened. The surgeon will take care to create contours that appear as if nature gave them to you.
In most cases, nipple correction will accompany skin tissue removal. This involves the cutting away and reduction of areolar tissue. The remaining areolas will be repositioned and recontoured to ensure they look similar on both sides.
Fatty tissue is removed with liposuction. This procedure involves a small incision that acts as the entry point for the liposuction device. After the incision is made, a solution will be injected underneath the skin at the treatment area.
This solution is composed of an anesthetic mixed with saline aimed at softening the fatty tissue.
Next, a cannula, a thin rod inserted into the chest area, is used to break up the fatty tissue and suction it away.
Some gynecomastia surgeons, such as Dr. Babak Moeinolmolki of the Gynecomastia Center of Los Angeles offer another type of liposuction known as HD-Lipo.
You may also hear this liposuction referred to as VASER Liposuction. Instead of using a saline solution to break up the fat, VASER Lipo uses high-intensity sound waves to emulsify and soften the fat. This makes it easy to suction away.
While liposuction is useful for eradicating larger pockets of fat, VASER Lipo gets a bit deeper and helps with that superficial layer of fat that is so hard to lose through diet and exercise alone.
Bodybuilders particularly like VASER Liposuction because of its ability to reveal their hard work in the gym.
What is Gynecomastia Recovery Like?
After surgery, you will be taken to a recovery room, where you will be closely monitored by the surgical staff as you come out of anesthesia. Once cleared by your surgeon, your escort can drive you to pick up any prescriptions you may need before driving you home.
Drainage tubes may be installed to collect fluids. These will be removed at your follow-up visit with your gynecomastia surgeon.
You will be told to wear a compression garment during the first several weeks of your gynecomastia recovery period. You’ll only take the vest off to shower and at other occasional times. Otherwise, wear the garment, which is a weighted prosthesis that aids in circulation and healing.
The compression garment also preserves the contours developed during gynecomastia surgery. Take care not to sleep directly on the surgical wounds. And follow your surgeon’s care instructions carefully when it comes to proper wound care.
If you had skin excision performed, your recovery might extend longer than six weeks, but that length of time is when most patients are back to work and their usual activities.
You might not be able to return to any heavy chest exercises, like bench press, for six weeks or longer. Check with your gynecomastia specialist before engaging in any heavy exercise post-surgery so that you can retain your newly configured chest.
How to Start the Journey to Gynecomastia Treatment
Looking for “treatment for gynecomastia near me?” Surgery is only one avenue available to you as a cannabis consumer. If you feel that smoking weed contributed to your condition, schedule a consultation with a gynecomastia surgeon, such as Dr. Moeinolmolki (Dr. Moein for short).
At the Gynecomastia Center of Los Angeles, Dr. Moein offers telehealth and in-person consultations. A telehealth consultation can help you determine if gynecomastia treatment is right for you via your smartphone or laptop without having to dedicate time to visit the surgical center.
An in-person meeting is inevitable once gynecomastia is confirmed through telehealth. Meeting with Dr. Moein allows for a full examination. This includes a physical exam of your chest area and areolas to determine the type and extent of gynecomastia treatment needed.
Other tests may be necessary, including blood and imaging tests. These help to determine if cannabis has indeed led to gynecomastia or if there is some other underlying condition like liver failure contributing to excess male breast growth.
Other than gynecomastia surgery, which is the only permanent way to treat moderate to severe types of the condition, there are also medications and techniques, such as abstaining from the substance in question.
For example, your surgeon may recommend that you quit cannabis for a period of time to determine if the condition will subsist on its own.
You may find that cannabis did not contribute to your male breast growth and that your antidepressant or kidney disease left you with swollen breasts instead.
Will you have to stop cannabis even after undergoing gynecomastia treatment? That is up to you and the advice you obtain from your surgeon. Remember that there is strong evidence that smoking weed and gynecomastia are related.
“I finally found treatment for gynecomastia near me!” Call the Gynecomastia Center of Los Angeles
You can ask those types of questions and learn more about male breast reduction surgery as a weed consumer, the cost of surgery, and gynecomastia insurance, by calling the Gynecomastia Center of Los Angeles.
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LA Cosmetic Surgeon Dr. Moein is board-certified by the American Board of General Surgery.