Taylor Hooton Foundation > Hoot’s Corner > General > Australia: Rise in cases of male breast reduction surgeries blamed on steroids
December 15, 2014
Australia: Rise in cases of male breast reduction surgeries blamed on steroids
STEROIDS and obesity are to blame for a spike in male breast reduction surgeries, experts say.
New Health Department figures show 252 WA men were diagnosed with gynaecomastia, or excess breast tissue, last year – an increase of 20 per cent on the previous year. The number of men undergoing mastectomies for the condition has also increased, up 41 per cent over the past 10 years, with boys as young as 15 going under the knife. Gynaecomastia can be caused by a number of medical conditions, but health experts are warning steroid use and obesity are behind the growing number of WA cases. Perth plastic and reconstructive surgeon Timothy Hewitt said the disorder’s increasing prevalence simply couldn’t be put down to medical reasons alone. “A population that is getting a bit heavier and maybe some increased steroid usage in the gym, they are certainly populations that we see an increased number in gynae- comastia cases,” he said. National data shows 78 WA men had gynaecomastia-related mastectomies between July and October this year. Of those, most (30) were in the 25-34 age group, followed by 16 people aged 15 to 24. “There is a very long list of medical causes for gynaecomastia; essentially any medical condition that causes a disruption of the hormone levels can cause gynaecomastia,” Dr Hewitt said. “(But) cumulatively they are quite rare.” It comes after The Sunday Times revealed Innaloo pharmacists Frank Balestra was last month banned from dispensing drugs for 30 years after an investigation found he improperly supplied bodybuilders with “100,000 items” . It is understood Mr Balestra was one of two pharmacists who filled prescriptions for Perth doctor Mughammad Saliem Ismail, who wrote 70,000 prescriptions over nine years so his patients could access steroids, human growth hormones and stimulants without any medical reason. Australian Medical Association state president Michael Gannon said being overweight increased the amount of oestrogen produced by fat cells. http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/rise-in-wa-cases-of-male-breast-reduction-surgeries-blamed-on-steroids-and-obesity/story-e6frg6n6-1227155249257?nk=9be00738e17725b76bd07947ac32b8a7