Male Breast Reduction
It is more common than one might think for men to have extra fat, breast tissue, and/or skin in the chest area, creating the appearance of male breasts. This condition, called gynecomastia, may affect one or both sides of the chest. Men or teens with gynecomastia often feel self-conscious, particularly in social situations where removing a shirt is common. With male breast reduction, our plastic surgeons—John M. Sarbak, MD and Amy Simon, MD—can help patients attain a more sculpted, masculine chest.
Many men challenged by the presence of male breasts have sought a surgical solution to finally put an end to their gynecomastia. If you have been struggling to overcome this condition with disappointing results, it may be time to consider male breast reduction surgery. We welcome you to contact our practice to schedule your personal consultation with Dr. Sarbak or Dr. Simon.
- What is Gynecomastia?
- Gynecomastia Treatment Candidates
- Gynecomastia Treatment Benefits
- Male Breast Reduction Procedure
- Male Breast Reduction Results
- Male Breast Reduction Recovery
What Is Gynecomastia?
Gynecomastia can occur in men of every body type, even those who work out regularly and are quite muscular. The condition can be attributed to any number of causes, which may include:
- Certain medications
- Hormonal conditions
- Weight gain
- Weight loss
- Certain medical conditions
- Recreational drug and alcohol use
Candidates for Gynecomastia Treatment
The enlarged or swollen appearance of the breasts can be due to excess glandular breast tissue, excess fatty tissue, or a combination of the two. When a patient has an overabundance of fatty tissue without the presence of excess glandular breast tissue, the condition is sometimes referred to as “pseudo-gynecomastia.” Regardless of the type of gynecomastia, male breast reduction techniques can be used to contour and sculpt a more masculine chest. Typically, patients are 18 years of age or older, though younger patients may be considered when the procedure is deemed appropriate. Depending upon the type of tissues contributing to the enlarged appearance of the breasts, the treatment method your plastic surgeon uses may vary.
Benefits of Gynecomastia Treatment
Patients who seek out treatment for gynecomastia typically experience some degree of embarrassment about the physical appearance of their chest. Many men and teens with gynecomastia may experience emotionally painful teasing or taunting, which can make male breast reduction both a psychologically and physically beneficial treatment. Patients with mild to severe gynecomastia can derive many benefits from surgical treatment, including:
- Removal of excess glandular breast tissue
- Reduced excess fatty tissue
- Correction of any skin laxity
- Repositioned or resized nipple-areola complex
The result of gynecomastia treatment can be a more sculpted, toned, and masculine chest. If patients have developed pectoral muscles below the glandular breast tissue and redundant fatty tissue, the chest may take on a more muscular, athletic appearance. Most patients feel a tremendous boost of confidence after male breast reduction. They can confidently wear more form-fitting clothing and feel comfortable being shirtless in public settings, such as the beach or pool. Some patients report an improvement in their overall quality of life.
The Male Breast Reduction Procedure
The first step in treating gynecomastia is a thorough examination to evaluate size, shape, composition, and skin quality of the chest. Once this is done, your plastic surgeon can determine the best surgical course of action for correcting the appearance of gynecomastia. Dr. Sarbak or Dr. Simon may use a single surgical technique or a combination of appropriate methods to yield optimal results. Male breast reduction techniques may include:
Minimal Incision Gynecomastia Treatment: In some cases, gynecomastia can be corrected through surgical techniques that require only small incisions along the nipples (areolar) and/or within the armpits. For individuals with predominantly fatty breasts, liposuction alone–performed through minimal incisions–can often provide a nice result. Minimal incision breast reduction techniques have many advantages, which include less scarring and a faster recovery time.
Traditional Open-Incision Male Breast Reduction: When dealing with more severe cases of gynecomastia, reconstructive breast reduction techniques may be required to achieve a smooth, elevated pectoral silhouette. In these instances, excess fat, breast tissue, and loose skin are all surgically removed through open incisions. This process requires additional reconstructive skill when compared to less-invasive techniques. The nipples may need to be repositioned as well to achieve a natural-looking end result.
Recovery from Male Breast Reduction
After gynecomastia treatment, most patients experience mild bruising and swelling. These side effects usually dissipate quickly, and any postoperative discomfort can be managed with medication. Most patients can return to their normal daily activities within three to five days from the date of surgery; however, rigorous physical activity and any heavy lifting should be avoided for two to three weeks. Comprehensive recovery information will be provided to prospective patients well in advance of their scheduled treatment.
Patients should be able to notice an immediate change in the appearance of their chest after male breast reduction. As swelling continues to subside throughout the healing process, the results may continue to improve. Eating a nutritious diet and exercising regularly may help maintain or even improve the results of the procedure.