Virginal breast hypertrophy

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Virginal breast hypertrophy (VBH) is not a medical name, but the more known name for juvenile macromastia and juvenile gigantomastia. It causes excessive growth of the breasts during puberty and has a much higher frequency than the rare cases of breast hypertrophy in pregnancy.

VBH normally starts when puberty starts, soon after the girl's first menstrual period. But some doctors suggest that breast development (thelarche) occurs before menstrual onset (menarche).[1]

The breast growth sometimes is not constant and comes in "growth spurts". At times, women may have minimal or no breast growth and then experience a growth spurt where the breasts grow very rapidly in a short space of time. These growth spurts cause great physical discomfort, the main symptoms being red, itchy skin and sometimes a general ache in the breasts. But in puberty the breasts can also continuously grow at an even pace for the space of several years. This process can overdevelop a completely normal and healthy breast, sometimes to gigantic extents.

With VBH, enlargement of the nipples usually also occurs, and the nipples can grow to an enormous size. In very severe cases of VBH, hypertrophy of the clitoris can also occur.


  1. Puberty Stages of Development. Ask the Expert FAQs. Retrieved on 2006-11-21.

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