An imbalance of hormones triggers gynecomastia. A decrease in the amount of testosterone level compared with estrogen leads to the condition. The decline in testosterone levels can be caused by conditions that block the effects of or reduce testosterone.
It may also be a condition that increases your estrogen level. Several factors can upset the hormone balance, and these include the following:
Natural hormone changes
The hormones testosterone and estrogen not only control the development but it is a maintenance of sex characteristics in both men and women. Testosterone takes control of male traits, such as muscle mass and body hair, while estrogen takes control of female characteristics, including the growth of breasts. Most people associate estrogen as an exclusively female hormone, but the truth is, men also produce it — though generally in small quantities.
However, when male estrogen levels are too high or are out of balance with testosterone levels, this can cause gynecomastia.
Several health conditions can cause gynecomastia by tilting the average balance of hormones. These include:
• Any conditions that interfere with normal testosterone production, such as Klinefelter's syndrome or pituitary insufficiency, can be associated with gynecomastia.
• Hormone changes that occur during the normal course of ageing can cause gynecomastia, especially in overweight men.
• Some tumours, such as those involving the testes, adrenal glands or pituitary gland, can produce hormones that alter the male-female hormone balance. In this condition, the thyroid gland produces too much of the hormone thyroxine.
• Kidney Failure: About half the people treated with regular hemodialysis experience gynecomastia due to hormonal changes.
• Liver Failure And Cirrhosis: Hormonal fluctuations related to liver problems and medications taken for cirrhosis are associated with gynecomastia.
• Malnutrition And Starvation: When your body is deprived of adequate nutrition, testosterone levels drop while estrogen levels remain constant. As such, this causes a hormonal imbalance. Unfortunately, Gynecomastia may persist despite resuming normal nutrition.