Gynecomastia removes the excess tissue in the breast that may develop for some males as a result of an imbalance in natural hormones, the use of synthetic hormones, or excessive weight gain. The condition is most common in puberty and may resolve itself naturally in the later teen years. For adult males, gynecomastia is an effective solution to restoring a masculine profile to the chest when weight reduction and appropriate lifestyle changes have failed to eliminate the appearance of male breasts.
Be very careful! Many surgeons remove too much tissue by liposuction only. This can cause a severe dent. Some also make too many scars that are very noticeable, or put the nipples too high, when the natural male nipple should be at the lower side of the chest, closer to the inferior border of pectoralis muscle lines. Also, the incision below the chest/breast should be matching with the inferior lining of the pec major. This line should also be lifted as it goes into the axilla. Many male chest surgeries can cause droopy nipples, or skin that hangs over the pec major. Dr. BYUN, the Top Plastic Surgeon in the Midwest will assure that none of these common issues occur.
Breast reduction for men is performed with an incision around the nipple. If enlargement has diffused around the breast area, it may be difficult to restore a smooth chest and there may be ridges at the edge of surgical areas. However, suction lipectomy has reduced the probability of this issue occurring.
Surgery can take place under either local or general anesthesia and requires approximately an hour and a half. Using tumescent liposuction, experienced plastic surgeon Dr. Michael BYUN will first inject a fluid that aids in loosening fat cells into the target area. He will then insert a narrow, hollow tube through small incisions to suction out the fat. If excessive volume in the breast area is composed mostly of glandular tissue, Dr. BYUN may advise an excision procedure to remove it.
After removal of the target fat and/or glandular tissue, incisions are closed with sutures and the healing process begins.
Right after surgery you will need to refrain from heavy lifting and straining your chest and arms by pushing or pulling heavy objects. You should not lift your arms above your shoulders prior to your first per-operative visit. At your first visit, Dr. BYUN will determine which activities you will be allowed to resume. Everyone heals at a different pace, and asymmetry and swelling are part of the healing process.
Keep all bandages, dressings, and tapes intact for 48 hours. This time is crucial in creating the desired results. After 48 hours you may take your first shower. Remove and discard external bandages not applied directly to the skin (ace wraps and gauze) and do not replace. Do not remove the Micro-foam sponge tape that supports the breasts. You must wait until your first follow-up appointment with Dr. BYUN where he will further instruct you. Also, as stated before, do not remove any bandages/tapes that are applied directly to the skin to cover incisions. If any tape or part of the tape loses adhesiveness, it is acceptable to trim the edges. Do not remove tape completely. Cleanse any uncovered incisions 3-4 times a day using clean gauze soaked in saline water (found at your local pharmacy) and follow the instructions from the first page about showering and cleansing incisions.
It is not uncommon if you experience discomfort for several weeks after surgery, especially while you open doors and pull or push objects. This is all normal. Expect asymmetry, size differences, and folds at different levels. All of these concerns will be addressed by Dr. BYUN at the follow up appointments in the weeks to come.
You must take a shower prior to and on the same day as each follow up appointment to clean the incisions and prepare them for suture removal.
How To Maintain Best Gynecomastia Results
Most patients feel soreness and pain for several days following surgery. 48 hours after surgery gauze dressings may be removed, and you may shower. Ten days after the conclusion of surgery, Dr. BYUN will conduct a follow-up appointment, where he will remove sutures and inform you of massage techniques to perform at home to expedite the recovery process. Dr. BYUN recommends purchasing a sports bra with a zipper in front to wear for the weeks of healing. Swelling may need three to five weeks in order to fully dissipate. Though you may return to work in about three to four weeks, excessive work or lifting should be avoided for a few months.
Male Breast Reduction Recovery
Dressing and drains can be removed after a week in the post-operative appointment. Patients can resume driving in four to five days and can return to work or school in about a week. Patients should also avoid strenuous physical activity for a month. Complications may include excessive scarring, hematoma formation, or infection.
At night, recovering patients should sleep on the back with pillows to elevate the head and upper body. During the day, strenuous physical activities should be avoided, but patients should make time for walking. Walking will which will improve circulation, speed up the healing process, and help prevent the formation of blood clots.
Dr. BYUN will schedule several postoperative visits in order to monitor the recovery process.
Male Breast Reduction FAQs
Can Liposuction Completely Resolve Gynecomastia?
It depends upon whether the excess volume in the breast area is caused by a growth of fat or glandular tissue. Hormones are most often responsible for excessive glandular volume, and in this case liposuction will not be as effective as excision, which involves cutting away this unwanted tissue. If you are overweight, there is a good chance that most of the breast volume is comprised of fat. Men who are thin or who have taken steroids usually need to undergo an excision procedure to restore a masculine profile. In some patients, using both liposuction and excision will be appropriate.
Should The Surgeon Remove As Much Fat As Possible?
Gynecomastia requires both skill and artistry in a plastic surgeon. Shaping a natural profile involves removing strategic amounts of fat and glandular tissue, rather than performing an extensive reduction that will create surface depressions or, in overweight patients, may make the chest seem unnaturally out of proportion with the abdomen. This is especially true if the patient later loses a great deal of weight. An experienced surgeon knows that a satisfying result depends on the aesthetic appeal of the new profile, not the quantity of fat removed.
Will I Have Scarring?
If liposuction is all that is necessary to treat your gynecomastia, Dr. BYUN will make two small incisions to insert the narrow tube that will suction out fat cells. In cases where glandular tissue needs to be removed with an excision procedure, incisions will be necessary along the bottom of the areolas. All scars are carefully placed and will fade with time. In addition, men have the advantage of chest hair to camouflage any surgical marks.
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