Gynecomastia refers to a relatively common condition among men – excessive breast tissue. There are several causes for this condition, among them: obesity, glandular/hormonal issues, genetics, or the use of certain drugs. Most commonly, no specific cause is found. Males who develop gynecomastia at a young age may become self-conscious and dissatisfied with their bodies. This lack of self-esteem can have long-lasting psychological consequences. Males who develop gynecomastia at a later age generally cope better with the condition, as their self-image has already been established to some degree. However, these men may feel embarrassed or self-conscious about taking their shirt off or even wearing certain clothes. Either way, gynecomastia can be damaging to the psyche, and many men would like to alleviate the condition. Our board certified plastic surgeon, Paul LoVerme, MD, offers advanced procedures to successfully address gynecomastia.
Benefits of Male Breast Reduction and Complementary Procedures
When excess fat and/or glandular breast tissue create the appearance of swollen breasts, men can feel self-conscious or struggle with body image issues. Treating gynecomastia with high definition (Hi Def) liposuction can give the chest a more masculine, muscular shape and provide psychological benefits as well. Male breast reduction surgery can eliminate excess glandular tissue and fatty tissue, smooth and tighten any loose skin of the chest, and resize the areolas. Male breast reduction surgery is appropriate for all men— from teenagers to healthy 70 year olds. After male breast reduction surgery, patients typically feel more comfortable with their bodies and more at ease wearing form-fitting clothing, removing their shirts at beaches or pools, and participating in sports that do not require a shirt. Some patients choose to combine male breast reduction with an additional procedure such as abdominal or flank liposuction or CoolSculpting® to further transform and tone the appearance of their upper body.
Candidates for Gynecomastia Treatment
Ideal candidates for male breast reduction should not be obese and have adequate skin elasticity. During the consultation process, Dr. LoVerme performs a physical examination, carefully reviews your medical history, and discusses your goals and expectations. If he determines you are a good candidate for male breast reduction surgery, he will design a customized treatment plan that can meet your unique needs. As with any surgery, there are risks, which should be taken into consideration before having the procedure performed. Dr. LoVerme will discuss all of the benefits, risks, and complications associated with the techniques he plans to use to accomplish your treatment.
Gynecomastia Treatment Options
Depending on the cause of gynecomastia in the individual, there are a number of possible solutions to consider:
- Diet and exercise – If your gynecomastia is primarily a result of excess body fat, maintaining a healthy diet and regular aerobic exercise routine may be able to help resolve the breasts’ enlarged appearance. In addition, pushups, bench presses, and other work-out techniques intended to specifically target the pectoral muscles can often be beneficial. However, if the breasts contain a disproportionate amount of glandular breast tissue, the breast reducing benefits of weight loss will be limited, and you may have to consider surgical alternatives.
- Abstinence from detrimental substances – Should gynecomastia develop due to the use and/or consumption of androgenic steroids, alcohol, or marijuana, refraining from using these substances may cause the symptoms of gynecomastia to subside over time—although the breast tissue growth is often permanent.
- Male breast reduction surgery – Should all of these options prove to be unsuccessful (and it is determined that you are a good candidate), breast reduction surgery may be an excellent solution. Based on your unique needs, this treatment could involve fat removal and high definition chest recontouring via VASER LipoSelection®, SAFELipo®, and/or the excision of excess glandular tissue through the nipple. Most often, both techniques are combined to achieve comprehensive reduction and smooth, muscular results.
Ultimately, the most effective treatment option will depend on the particular cause of gynecomastia. If you are experiencing gynecomastia and wish to learn which technique may be best for your specific needs and desires, a consultation with Dr. LoVerme should be scheduled. He is skilled in high definition body contouring and excision techniques, and during your appointment he can conduct a thorough examination and help you determine the most appropriate course of action. Both procedures are generally performed through incisions that are small, carefully hidden around the edge of the areolas, and typically result in minimal scarring.
Male Breast Reduction Procedure
Each male breast reduction surgery is custom-tailored to suit the patient’s individual needs and achieve his cosmetic goals. For some patients, Dr. LoVerme will need to excise glandular tissue. For others, excessive fat can be removed using liposuction techniques. Dr. LoVerme usually will use VASER LipoSelection®, a gentle ultrasound type of liposuction, to effectively remove and sculpt fatty tissue. The majority of patients typically require a combination of gland excision and VASER LipoSelection® to create optimal results.
Cost of Male Breast Reduction
Since each male breast reduction surgery is unique, the exact cost of the procedure can vary between patients. A number of factors are considered when determining the cost of male breast reduction including how much tissue must be removed, which techniques are necessary, anesthesiologist’s fees, and postoperative medications. If glandular breast tissue is removed it will be sent for pathology lab review and there will be an additional charge. Patients seeking ways to make male breast reduction more affordable can explore our financing options, which offer low monthly payments and low-interest loans.
Male Breast Reduction Recovery and Results
The recovery period following male breast reduction surgery is fairly short. Immediately following the surgery, there is typically some bruising and swelling. Dr. LoVerme will cover the stitched incisions with a dressing. You will also need to wear a pressure garment for four weeks after the procedure (we will provide this garment for you). Within four to six weeks, the area will heal and the swelling will dissipate, and you will see the final results of your gynecomastia surgery. Male breast reduction can enhance your appearance and self-esteem, however it is important to have realistic expectations before having any cosmetic surgery performed.
Potential gynecomastia patients can contact Paul LoVerme, MD for further information on male breast reduction surgery, or to schedule a confidential consultation.