Gynecomastia

GYNECOMASTIA TREATMENT

Also known as male breast reduction.

The goal of gynecomastia treatment is to reduce breast size in men who are embarrassed by overly large breasts. Reduction methods include liposuction, cutting out excess glandular tissue or using a combination of liposuction and excision. If you are treated by a board-certified plastic surgeon, gynecomastia can be effectively and safely improved or corrected completely.

WHEN TO CONSIDER GYNECOMASTIA TREATMENT

  • If you are reluctant to remove your shirt in public, to swim, to participate in sports or to exercise at a gym.

  • If you want to improve your overall body proportions.

  • If you experience psychological discomfort associated with "man boobs" or large breasts.

  • If you want to increase your social confidence.

CONSIDERATIONS

PROS

  • You can feel comfortable revealing your chest contours, clothed or unclothed.

  • You can gain more social confidence.

  • You can enjoy permanent results.

CONS

  • Scarring may make you feel self-conscious.

  • You may be disappointed with your final results.

  • Weight gain following this surgery will compromise results.

These are the top three pros and cons to weigh when considering gynecomastia treatment. If you want to focus on what is unique to you, please consult with your aesthetic plastic surgeon.

Are you a good candidate for gynecomastia treatment?

Gynecomastia is usually not caused by any serious medical problems; in fact, its cause is rarely identified. However, because there are some medical problems that do cause gynecomastia, your first step is to see your family doctor to rule this out.

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A.

A. Diet and exercise-resistant fat in the chest area can cause both physical and social discomfort.

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B.

B. Maintaining a stable weight will ensure that your improved body contour will be long lasting.

The following are some common reasons why you may want to consider gynecomastia treatment:

  • You are unhappy with the size or appearance of your breasts.

  • You experience physical discomfort because of your breasts.

  • You have good skin elasticity. Successful gynecomastia surgery involves adequate skin contraction after your excess skin is surgically removed. Your skin may lack the necessary elasticity for good contraction if you are age fifty or older, have significant sun damage, have breasts with a lot of stretch marks or have undergone gastric bypass surgery.

  • You have first tried diet and exercise to reduce your breast size.

  • You are not significantly overweight. Although surgery will help this patient population, the results will not be as good. For this reason, you should try to get within thirty to forty pounds of your ideal body weight before surgery.

  • You do not use marijuana, steroids or drink alcoholic beverages excessively (it is theorized that these substances may cause gynecomastia).

If you are in good general health, have a positive attitude and realistic expectations, you are most likely a good candidate for this procedure.

WHAT ARE MY OPTIONS?

Enlarged breasts may be excess fatty tissue (pseudogynecomastia) rather than breast tissue and, in this case, can often be improved with diet and exercise alone. To treat the puffy nipples associated with gynecomastia, you will probably need liposuction combined with chest reduction using glandular excision. If you’re considering gynecomastia surgery, a board-certified plastic surgeon will determine the best course of treatment based on your physical presentation, i.e., your options will be determined by your condition.

WHAT WILL MY GYNECOMASTIA TREATMENT INCISIONS AND SCARS BE LIKE?

Scars resulting from gynecomastia surgery vary, depending on the amount of breast tissue you have and the elasticity of your skin. Even those who have larger breasts and tend to get larger scars are usually quite satisfied with the results.

  • If you have small breasts that are only fat, then your scars will be tiny (just large enough to admit a liposuction cannula).

  • If you have large female-like breasts, then the scars may extend across each side of your chest, but your surgeon will attempt to hide them in a crease.

  • With firm breast tissue, there is usually a scar under the areola.

  • If the areolas are large and need reduction also, then the scar goes all the way around the areola.

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A.

A. Small incisions for liposuction treatment are placed in hard to see areas on and around the chest.

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B.

B. If surgical excision is required, the incision is commonly made under the areola.

LIMITATIONS AND RISKS

Fortunately, significant complications from gynecomastia are infrequent. Your specific risks for gynecomastia will be discussed during your consultation. 

All surgical procedures have some degree of risk. Some of the potential complications of all surgeries are:

  • Adverse reaction to anesthesia

  • Hematoma or seroma (an accumulation of blood or fluid under the skin that may require removal)

  • Infection and bleeding

  • Changes in skin sensation

  • Scarring

  • Allergic reactions

  • Damage to underlying structures

  • Unsatisfactory results that may necessitate additional procedures

 

Other risks specific to gynecomastia surgery are outlined below:

  • Blood clots in the legs or lungs.

You can help minimize certain risks by following the advice and instructions of your board-certified plastic surgeon, both before and after your gynecomastia surgery.

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