Seems some men like boobs so much, they grow their own. Sorry - we don't mean to titter… In fact, we know having man boobs can be a very distressing condition - and one fellas can be incredibly shy to ask about. So here's everything you ever needed to know...
1. Man boobs, moobs, chap baps, man cans. No, people! It has a proper medical name: gynaecomastia.
2. It’s more common than you’d think – affecting half of men at some stage in their lives, often puberty.
3. In many cases, the condition causes no problems. But it can hugely affect self-esteem. And yes, they can be painful.
4. Yes, you’re still a proper man. And no, you’re not turning into a woman.
5. The main cause is an imbalance of the sex hormones testosterone and oestrogen – too little of the former or too much of the latter. Sometimes this imbalance has no known cause, however it may be due to a surge of female hormones passed from a mother to her newborn baby boy; due to puberty, or hormone changes in older age. Obesity can also increase levels of oestrogen.
6. Much rarer causes include: the side-effects of certain medications – eg, for heart disease or in treating stomach ulcers; illegal drug use; too much alcohol; kidney or liver failure; lumps or an infection in the testicles, or a rare genetic condition called Klinefelter’s syndrome.
7. What should I do? Don’t suffer in silence! See your GP if you’re at all worried. He WILL have seen it before.
8. Treatment may mean medication to rebalance your hormones, or surgery. However breast-reduction may not be available on the NHS unless you’ve had the condition for a long time and it is causing you obvious distress.
9. A healthy diet and exercise can help – press ups and bench presses are good. Get advice at the gym and do it properly.
10. You can buy special vests and t-shirts to hold it all in!
11. Spare a thought for Chinese farmer Guo Feng… It was thought he had the world’s largest man boobs until he had them removed, aged 53.
And if you’re feeling brave enough for a giggle, click here to witness a Biggest Man Boob Contest on TV..!