Clinical experience indicates that many young adolescent boys are seriously concerned about their breast development and its implications for their sexual development and identity, often prompting them to avoid sports or other activities that require them to remove their shirts (Weiner et. al, 2003 p. 470). A psychiatric study was undertaken in a series of 284 boys and men with varying degrees and types of enlargements of the breasts to determine the effects of this condition on their personality adaptations.
Evaluations ranged from limited personality appraisals to intensive psychotherapy with psychological tests and follow-up and social service studies in many instances. Although gynecomastia did not provide rise to specific personality responses, it did create anxiety as to the individual’s masculine adequacy. The adolescent reacted in a variety of ways. Some “accepted” feminine roles, others strove to prove their adequacy as males, and a few accepted homosexualities, but even more common was “pseudohomosexual” anxiety manifested through a variety of adaptations and psychosomatic symptoms (Schonfeld, p.
379). Self-esteem and confidence are likely to subside in the case of male with gynecomastia. Usually males affected by this condition refrains the exposure of their chest area. These people tend to hide their chest by covering them or wearing loose clothing in order to prevent further exposure. Moreover, this condition prevents intrinsic male aggressiveness, which initiates passive behavior on the person (Crowley, 2004 p. 416). In addition, the case of gynecomastia usually conveys sterility, or impotence, which can greatly affect the maleness perception in the individual afflicted by the condition.
Most common response of these individuals that possess such accompanying signs and symptoms are denial of maleness leasing to role confusion, denial of gender functions, and depression due to perceived impaired gender identity (Lipscomb etal, 2005 p. 205). Medical intervention is limited largely due to concern about side effects, but Tamoxifen and Testolactone may provide relief for adolescents with significant psychological sequelae. Surgery is another useful option for boys with moderate to severe gynecomastia or in case where the condition has not resolved after an extended period of time (Weiner et. al, 2003 p. 470).
The caring interventions employed for this case is through the provision of health teaching regarding the condition. It is essential to explain the disorder processes especially differentiating pubertal from pathologic conditions. Note also to initiate internal exploration of the individual’s feelings and perception towards his condition. Consider negative perception, and direct focus, plan interventions and explore these perspectives in order to reduce alterations of body image and personality.
Crowley, L. V. (2004). An Introduction to Human Disease: Pathology and Pathophysiology Correlations. Jones and Bartlett Publishers. Dronkers, D. J. (2002). The Practice of Mammography: Pathology, Technique, Interpretation, Adjunct Modalities. Thieme. Eugster etal, E. A. (2004). Pediatric Endocrinology: Mechanisms, Manifestations, and Management. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. Gerber, D. , & Kuechel, M. (2005). 100 Questions and Answers about Plastic Surgery. Jones and Bartlett Publishers. Greenspan, F. S. , & Gardner, D. G. (2004). Basic & Clinical Endocrinology.
McGraw-Hill Professional. Harris, J. R. (2004). Diseases of the Breast. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. Lipscomb etal, J. (2005). Outcomes Assessment in Cancer: Measures, Methods and Applications. Cambridge University Press. Moore, K. , & Dalley, A. F. (2006). Clinically Oriented Anatomy. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. Schonfeld, W. A. (January). Gynecomastia in Adolescece: Effect on Body Image and Personality Adaptation. Journal on Psychosomatic Medicine, 24, 379-389. Weiner etal, W. B. (2003). Handbook of Psychology. John Wiley and Sons.