Will gynecomastia come back after surgery if I stay on Propecia? (Photo)

I have been on propecia for 8 years, which I believe has slowed, though not stopped, my hair loss. Until recently the only side effects have been some hair loss on my lower legs. Just recently I've begun to develop gynecomastia. If I have corrective surgery but stay on propecia will it come back?

Doctor Answers 9

Concerns of Taking Propecia after Surgery

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With previous concerns of Propecia altering the estrogen/androgen ratio, this could definitely be something to worry about after a successful gynecomastia procedure. If your estrogen has been increased to this point due to the medication, thus causing the problem, it could surely cause a return later down the road. It certainly may not be immediate, but it would be something to discuss with your doctor before scheduling anything for certain.

Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 116 reviews

Gynecomastia and Propecia

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There have been lawsuits in the past regarding male breasts forming after taking Propecia, as it alters the estrogen/androgen ratio. Although it is a small percentage of men, it can happen as there is some breast tissue left for sculpting during male breast reduction. Be sure to see a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon who specializes in gynecomastia. Good luck!

Miguel Delgado, MD
San Francisco Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 81 reviews

Rare for propecia to cause gynecomastia

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It is very rare that people on propecia develop gynecomastia but it has been reported.     I would have the surgery ad stay on propecia because the likelihood of growth of the gland is very rare.   My Best,  Dr Commons

Propecia and gynecomastia

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Use of propecia can be associated with gynecomastia formation even though the incidence is low.  With a typical gynecomastia procedure you leave behind a small amount of fibroglandular tissue underneath the nipple-areolar complex to prevent a contour deformity.  This tissue theoretically could grow despite having surgery, although the chance is fairly low.  Meet with a plastic surgeon and discuss the situation.  Good luck!

Timothy A. Janiga MD, FACS

Gynecomastia and Propecia

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Hi budhogan1,
Thanks for the post and photo.  There is a relationship between Propecia and gynecomastia but the incidence is not high. That being said when doing gynecomastia surgery, some breast tissue is left behind to support the nipple and areola. Whether this reduced amount of breast could be stimulated by the Propecia is not something that can be definitively answered. I would base your decision on how much the gynecomastia is bothering you and affecting your ability to do the things you want to do.

Dr. Dadvand

Babak Dadvand, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 51 reviews


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I think that you need to be evaluated in person first. Is there fat or gland or both underneath the nipple? How is the quality of the skin?  These all can be assessed in person.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Will gynecomastia come back after surgery if I stay on Propecia?

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Thank you for the question. Unfortunately, it will not be possible to predict whether residual breast tissue will increase in size, if you remain on medication known to cause this problem.  Remember, that gynecomastia surgery generally does not involve removal of all breast tissue; a small amount of breast tissue is left intact below the areola to prevent contour ("saucer") deformities.
Optimally, it is best to avoid any type of medications or substances that can cause recurrence of gynecomastia, once you have chosen to proceed with gynecomastia surgery.

Best wishes.


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I have had patients who were intense bodybuilders and on heavy duty steroids which they stopped to do the surgery. We always have to leave a very small amount of gland tissue beneath the areola so it doesn't dip in. 

Sherwood Baxt, MD
Paramus Plastic Surgeon

Will gynecomastia come back after surgery if I stay on Propecia?

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Thank you for your question and for sharing your photograph.  Appropriate surgical correction of gynecomastia will prevent recurrence regardless of medication use.  Be sure to see a board certified plastic surgeon in consultation to obtain the best treatment advice. 

Nelson Castillo, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 80 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.