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15 & Have Big Nipples

Published: 12 August 2001
Dear TeenHealthFX,
I am a 15-year-old male. I have large nipples. I am not big; I'm actually fairly skinny. I can feel a muscle under the layer of the nipples' skin. Should or could I get the muscles removed and have normal nipples? It is real embarrassing at the pool because you can't tan. I don't feel okay with taking off my shirt while I mow my lawn. Please Help! I would really love to walk around with normal nipples feeling good about the way it looks. Thank you.
Signed: 15 & Have Big Nipples

Dear 15 & Have Big Nipples,

During puberty approximately 60%-75% of adolescent males experience an enlargement of their breasts. This condition is medically known as Gynecomastia and can be worrisome and embarrassing for many males. The condition is caused by stimulation of male's hormones on the breast tissue. (Not everyone realizes that boys, as well as girls, have breast tissue under the nipple) Boys might notice changes in the size of one or both breasts, usually in the region under the nipple. The nipple also can be sensitive to touch to the point where loose fitting clothing can be uncomfortable.

Gynecomastia usually occurs early in puberty and is not a serious medical problem. It usually resolves itself within a year, even in cases where the breast has gotten quite large. 

Unfortunately, there is really nothing that you can do to change this situation immediately except wait it out. There is hope. As your body grows and develops, your nipple size may decrease or become proportionate with your chest size. Also as stated earlier, it usually resolves itself within a year.

Next time you see your doctor ask him or her to check your development to make sure everything is normal. Remember to share any of your concerns with your doctor. If you would like to meet with a doctor and you live in northern New Jersey you can call the Adolescent/Young Adult Center For Health at 973.889.6350 for an appointment.

Just an interesting fact about Gynecomastia.  Marijuana use may contribute to Gynecomastia.

Signed: TeenHealthFX

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