• Germany edition
 
Elite soldiers 'growing left breasts'
Photo: DPA

Elite soldiers 'growing left breasts'

Published: 26 Jan 2013 14:08 GMT+01:00
Updated: 26 Jan 2013 14:08 GMT+01:00

The study, carried out by plastic and hand surgeons at the Bundeswehr hospital in Berlin, found that the guards were at greater risk of developing a condition called gynaecomastia, or an enlargement of the mammary gland, on the left side, the Hamburger Morgenpost newspaper recently reported.

Though gynaecomastia is usually a hormonal condition, the study found that serving in the guard battalion can also be a cause, because it requires soldiers to repeatedly slam their rifles into the left side of their chest during military drills.

Of the 211 gynaecomastia patients examined, doctors found that 35 came from the battalion, which appears at official events such as state visits and the "Great Tattoo" ceremonies for outgoing German presidents.

Of these 35 soldiers, 26 showed breast growth on the left side of their chests - an unusually high proportion for any sample of gynaecomastia cases.

According to the study, led by hospital department head Professor Björn Krapohl, there was "a highly significant correlation between the activities of a guard and left-sided gynaecomastia."

Krapohl also said that the correlation had been noticed as long ago as 2009, and that he had been lobbying for the "rifle-chest-slam" to be stopped since then.

The Bundeswehr confirmed that the study results had been passed on to the Defence Ministry. "The soldiers affected are being treated medically and are receiving individual therapy," a spokesman said, before adding that more studies should be carried out.

The battalion consists of nine companies, seven of which are stationed in Berlin. It is considered one of the plum appointments in the German army.

The Local/bk

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Your comments about this article

15:07 January 26, 2013 by Englishted
Bet they could fill out half a dirndl. Bavaria's low-cut traditional dress .

Or if I say that do I spark a sexism debate?

(see other headlines)
16:03 January 26, 2013 by Bigfoot76
^^ I see what you did there. :D
16:11 January 26, 2013 by Anny One again
sprayed the coffee on keyboard and screen,thanks ted
17:27 January 26, 2013 by Wrench
.............Never mind.
19:33 January 26, 2013 by twisted
Perhaps a change in the German Manual of Arms might be called for.
19:56 January 26, 2013 by realist1961
slamming them makes them bigger?
20:32 January 26, 2013 by Anny One again
Discount Mammography half price or check two,pay for one
23:45 January 26, 2013 by Lawdog20636
I¦#39;m glad everyone is having a little fun with this. It sucks to see everyone attacking each other over a difference in opinions we have on most topics. All of your comments have provided me with laughs…
03:34 January 27, 2013 by txjohn50
soldiers growing breasts...when i heard of it i naturally assumed it would be the french.
08:43 January 27, 2013 by coffeelover
So,,slamming the long rifle makes it grow?
13:55 January 27, 2013 by McM
Ah.... By the left, quick march, left right left, ....er sarg, I'm confused
07:04 January 28, 2013 by Englishted
@McM

Or ...... By the breast ,quick march,breast right,breast .......etc.
15:39 January 29, 2013 by KillaWabbit
Comment removed by The Local for breach of our terms.
Today's headlines
Germany's estate agents plan strike action
Photo: DPA

Germany's estate agents plan strike action

First it was the pilots, then train drivers - now Germany's real estate agents are threatening to go on strike. But their call to arms has been met with sneers rather than sympathy. READ  

Finger slicer's insurance scam fails
Ralf-Werner arriving in court last week. Photo: DPA

Finger slicer's insurance scam fails

An insurance salesman who sawed off his own finger and thumb to claim insurance was given a suspended sentence by a court in northern Germany on Friday. READ  

PKK: banned in Germany, allies in Iraq
Kurdish demonstrators at a rally in Düsseldorf in October. Photo: DPA

PKK: banned in Germany, allies in Iraq

Germany finds itself in a complicated relationship with the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK). At home, police must investigate anyone who flies the flag, but in the Middle East they are the best hope of beating back the Islamic State. READ  

Quiz
Will our Halloween quiz give you a fright?
Walpurgis Night in the Harz. Photo: DPA

Will our Halloween quiz give you a fright?

Germany is home to a plethora of haunted castles and has a huge stock of gruesome stories. How well do you know the spooky side of the Germans? READ  

Retail sales show biggest drop for seven years
Photo: DPA

Retail sales show biggest drop for seven years

German shoppers cut back on their spending in September at the fastest rate for seven years, official data showed on Friday. READ  

Fall of the Wall - 25 years
'I'm leaving for the West, who's coming?'
Engels at the spot where he drove through the Wall and in hospital in 1963 after being shot. Photo: Nick Allen/Fotoarchiv Alex Waidmann Berlin

'I'm leaving for the West, who's coming?'

There are many of tales of ingenious and well-thought out escape plans from people desperate to flee from East to West Berlin. Wolfgang Engels’ wasn’t one of them. It was, however, one of the most daring. READ  

Police probe pupils who made Nazi salutes
Pupils used WhatsApp to share messages which are police are investigating. Photo: DPA

Police probe pupils who made Nazi salutes

Police are investigating pupils at a school in Saxony-Anhalt for incitement of the people and use of banned symbols after teenagers allegedly made the Hitler salute. READ  

Time running out for refugees in Berlin school
Representatives of the refugees at a press conference last week. Photo: DPA

Time running out for refugees in Berlin school

An ultimatum for the remaining refugees and their supporters to leave an occupied school in Berlin, which has been the scene of protests for months, will expire at midnight on Friday. READ  

EU promises support for Ukraine gas deal
Photo: DPA

EU promises support for Ukraine gas deal

The European Union will "fully play its role" to implement the gas deal signed by Ukraine and Russia on Thursday, Chancellor Angela Merkel and President Francois Hollande said in a joint statement. READ  

Body scanners to come to more airports
Photo: DPA

Body scanners to come to more airports

Passengers at German airports can expect a controversial full body scan in the future. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Shutterstock
Sponsored Article
Offer: Unlimited airmiles from British Airways
Photo: DPA
Gallery
See how Berlin has changed in 22 photos
Photo: DPA
Gallery
Want to study in Germany? These are the subjects to choose
Photo: DPA
Society
Germans are wide of the mark on immigration
Photo: DPA
Society
Halloween: Where are the spookiest spots?
Photo: DPA
Business & Money
Who wants to work in Germany? A third of the world
Photo: DPA
Society
'We can't allow a proxy war on German streets'
Sponsored Article
International School on the Rhine: a legacy
Photo: DPA
Society
QUIZ: How well do you know Germany?
Photo: DPA/Shutterstock
Gallery
11 things Germans are afraid of...
Photo: DPA
Business & Money
JobTalk: All you need to know about working in Germany
National
Share news tips with The Local Germany
Sponsored Article
Bilingual education from nursery to graduation at Phorms
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

3,534
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd