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Teens With Gynecomastia Have Lower Psychosocial Well-Being

Abnormal development of breast tissue in males associated with poorer health, social functioning

WEDNESDAY, April 10 (HealthDay News) -- Adolescent males with gynecomastia have lower psychosocial well-being than their unaffected peers, according to a study published in the April issue of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery.

Laura C. Nuzzi, and colleagues from Boston Children's Hospital and Harvard Medical School in Boston, examined the physical and psychosocial impact of gynecomastia and its severity using data from surveys administered to 47 adolescents with gynecomastia and 92 male adolescent controls, aged 12 to 21 years.

The researchers found that patients with gynecomasia had a higher body mass index than controls. Regardless of body mass index category, patients with gynecomastia had lower scores in three Short-Form 36 domains (general health, social functioning, and mental health) and Rosenberg Self-Esteem scores, compared with controls. There was no difference between patients and controls in the Eating Attitudes Test-26 scores. The severity of gynecomastia had no effect on survey scores, independent of body mass index category.

"Our results indicate that careful and regular evaluation for gynecomastia may benefit adolescents regardless of body mass index status or severity of gynecomastia," the authors write. "Additional prospective studies examining treatment outcomes in this population are needed."

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