Skip to main content

Thank you for visiting You are using a browser version with limited support for CSS. To obtain the best experience, we recommend you use a more up to date browser (or turn off compatibility mode in Internet Explorer). In the meantime, to ensure continued support, we are displaying the site without styles and JavaScript.

Gynaecomastia: aetiology and treatment options


This paper reviews the aetiology, prevalence and treatment of gynaecomastia. Gynaecomastia is a proliferation of male breast tissue apparently caused by alterations in the ratio of oestrogen:androgen levels. It is common in the general population, resulting from normal physiological changes and various pathological causes. Gynaecomastia is also induced by many drug treatments, including hormonal therapies for prostate cancer. Prophylactic radiotherapy appears to be effective against gynaecomastia in this population. Surgery is an option for intractable cases, and some medical treatments have been reported, although there is a paucity of data evaluating such therapies.

Author information



Corresponding author

Correspondence to CJ Tyrrell.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Tyrrell, C. Gynaecomastia: aetiology and treatment options. Prostate Cancer Prostatic Dis 2, 167–171 (1999).

Download citation


  • gynaecomastia
  • prostate cancer
  • nonsteroidal antiandrogen
  • monotherapy
  • radiotherapy

Further reading


Quick links