What is gynaecomastia?
Gynecomastia is a swelling of the breast tissue in men or boys, caused by an imbalance of estrogen and testosterone. It can affect one or both breasts, sometimes unevenly. Newborns, boys going through puberty and older men may develop gynecomastia as a result of normal changes in hormone levels, though other causes also exist, such as genetic problems, chronic diseases (especially kidney and liver disease) or some medicines.
Male Breast Reduction surgery
Gynecomastia may resolve on its own or be treated with medication. When more serious cases arises, the breast tissue and surrounding skin can be removed through male breast reduction surgery.
There are two primary techniques used during a male breast reduction: liposuction and excision. Liposuction can provide excellent results for men with mild to moderate amounts of fatty tissue along the breasts, restoring a masculine chest.
Alternatively a small incision along the outside border of the areola is sufficient for the surgeon to remove excess glandular tissue. Excision can reduce a large volume of glandular tissue and excess skin, significantly improving moderate to extreme gynecomastia, re-contouring the chest and nipple. Minor scarring around the areola is common following an excision procedure although it is normally well hidden in the natural curvature of the chest.
Most cases of gynecomastia involve a mix of glandular and fatty tissue. For this reason, a combination procedure, using both liposuction and excision, may be required for the best possible results.
While you may feel sore for a few days, pain is usually minimal and can be managed with prescribed pain relief. Most men see an almost immediate improvement in their chest contour; however, complete results often take 4-6 months. Swelling and some bruising are normal after surgery, and the healing time will depend on the individual. You may also be required to wear a compression garment to help your chest heal optimally.
Most patients begin exercising slowly after about one week, and find they are back to work just a few days after surgery, unless they have a very physical job and need an extra week to recuperate, or if your surgeon advises otherwise.
Some men experience a loss of sensation in the treated areas after a male breast reduction, but this is almost always temporary. Any loss of sensation should gradually return over the months following your procedure.
Maintaining your results
Male breast reduction results are meant to be permanent – the excess fat, glandular tissue and skin removed are gone for good. However, it’s important to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Significant weight gain, steroid use, or certain medical conditions could result in a recurrence of gynecomastia. Additionally, drugs that influence testosterone levels could also affect your results. Your surgeon can help you learn what to do to maintain your results for the long term.
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