Dr. Charlotte Ann Rhee is a Board Certified Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeon in Huntington, Long Island NY that specializes in male breast reduction surgery (Gynecomastia). The over the development of male breasts, also known as gynecomastia, affects an estimated 40 to 60 percent of men. This condition may be caused by a hormonal imbalance, side effects from drugs, or may occur for no particular reason at all. But despite the cause, the condition is significant and may pose a serious problem in a man’s life.
Men with large or sagging breasts can be both physically and emotionally uncomfortable, often restricting themselves from certain activities because they feel self-conscious about their breast size. Male breast reduction is an excellent way to decrease the size of a man’s breast, helping him feel more comfortable and confident.
What Causes Gynecomastia?
Three quarters of all teenage boys have gynecomastia to some degree. It’s a direct result of puberty, where estrogen and testosterone levels can be off the charts, leading to enlarged breasts, along with acne and other teenage issues. Luckily for teenagers, once puberty ends so does their gynecomastia in the vast majority of cases.
In adults, breast enlargement usually arises in middle-aged and older men. This is a time of shifting hormones, too, and that is thought to play a role. It is also believed that certain medications have links to gynecomastia: steroids, antibiotics, anti-anxiety drugs, heartburn treatment drugs, tricyclic antidepressants, and AIDS treatment drugs. Steroids, in particular, are linked to enlarged breast development in men due to their hormonal makeup. Heavy drinking and marijuana use are also thought to be triggers.
What Results Can Male Breast Reduction Surgery Achieve?
Having enlarged breasts due to gynecomastia can be very tough on a man’s self-confidence. It can make him avoid situations where he has to remove his shirt. That’s no way to go through life, especially with all the nearby beaches in a Long Island summer.
When the enlarged tissue is removed, often along with some excess fat, you’ll have a slimmer, contoured chest. Dr. Rhee’s patients often tell us that they now feel comfortable going shirtless for the first time in years. The results are immediately seen, and recovery is not difficult. This procedure can be a real boost for a man’s self-esteem.
Candidate For Male Breast Reduction
A good candidate for male breast reduction surgery is any man who feels uncomfortable with his large breast size.
A good candidate for male breast reduction surgery is any man who feels uncomfortable with his large breast size. The procedure can be performed on men of all ages who are in good health, both physically and emotionally. The best candidates for male breast reduction surgery have firm, elastic skin that will reshape well to their body’s new contours.
Is Gynecomastia Surgery Permanent?
Patients wonder if this surgery will need repeating later on. True gynecomastia, versus enlarged breasts due to weight gain or other lifestyle factors, is caused mainly by excess glandular tissue. This causes the protrusion of the nipple-areola complex. In male breast reduction surgery, Dr. Rhee removes the majority of the mammary gland, leaving enough to support the nipple-areola. With this tissue gone, the chances of recurrence are very low.
However, if the gynecomastia was due to the use of steroids, marijuana, or other medications, it is possible for a patient’s breasts to become enlarged again if usage is continued. Also, a sizable increase in weight can allow fat to accumulate in the breasts, although this isn’t true gynecomastia.
If you want to maintain your new chest contours, keeping to a healthy weight, and moderating your alcohol or marijuana use will be necessary. Steroid use would fully need to cease, as enlarged breasts are a direct side effect.
Is Male Breast Reduction Surgery Painful?
For the first few days to a week after surgery your chest will be sore. Most patients say this is not acute pain. Dr. Rhee will prescribe pain medication, but many patients feel over-the-counter medication is all they need. You may have more lingering soreness if more skin was excised versus a procedure where liposuction removed more fat.
How To Prepare For Male Breast Reduction Surgery?
There isn’t any specific preparation necessary for this procedure with Dr. Rhee. You’ll need to stop taking any anti-inflammatory medications or aspirin, as these can lead to increased bleeding and subsequent bruising. You’ll need to stop smoking for two weeks or more prior and after your surgery. The preparation is the same as for any surgical procedure.
How Long Does Gynecomastia Surgery Take?
These procedures take from 1.5 to 2 hours, depending upon the amount of excess tissue that needs to be removed.
Male Breast Reduction Procedure
Male breast reduction surgery is usually performed under general anesthesia on an outpatient basis. The surgery typically takes one to three hours. Several techniques can be utilized for male breast reduction, depending on the extent of the procedure.
If the enlarged breasts are primarily caused by excessive fatty tissue, liposuction can be performed through tiny incisions to remove the excess fat. The incision may be made around the edge of the areola (the area around the nipple) or in the underarm. If an excess glandular tissue is the primary cause of the enlarged breast, the tissue will be excised, or cut out, in addition to liposuction.
In more extreme instances when large amounts of fat or glandular tissue have been removed, excess skin may have remained that has not reshaped well to the new contour of the breast. In these cases, the excess skin may have to be removed as well. The incisions are then closed using sutures and are usually covered with a dressing. The chest may be wrapped to keep the skin firmly in place.
Male Breast Reduction Recovery
Following male breast reduction surgery, patients will experience some bruising, swelling, and discomfort. This discomfort usually dissipates after a few days and can be reduced with prescribed medication. To help reduce swelling, an elastic pressure garment should be worn for about two weeks, and at night for several weeks later. Swelling and any skin discoloration will partially subside after a week or two, at which time stitches will be removed.
You will be encouraged to walk around on the day of your breast reduction surgery and can expect to return to work in approximately one week. You may also begin light aerobic exercise after a week, but you should avoid strenuous activities for about three to four weeks following surgery.
When Can I Get Back To My Normal Activities After This Surgery?
This is not an involved recovery. You can walk the day of your surgery with Dr. Rhee. You can drive in just a day or two. Most male breast reduction patients can return to work in less than a week. If you have strenuous work that involves your chest, this will need to be delayed. You’ll know when you’re ready to return to that kind of labor and to strenuous exercise. Pure chest exercises, such as lifting weights, will need to wait for probably about three weeks. Dr. Rhee will discuss timelines with you during your consultation.
Will I Be Left With Scars After Male Breast Reduction Surgery?
Because Dr. Rhee can usually make the incision around the patient’s areola or in the armpit, scarring is almost invisible. Scarring is not a problem with this surgery.
Risks And Complications Of Male Breast Reduction
As with all surgical procedures, male breast reduction surgery contains a possibility of complication. Although rare, these complications include:
- Skin injury
- Excessive bleeding
- Excessive fluid accumulation or loss
- Loss of nipple sensation
- Asymmetrical breasts or nipples
Schedule A Gynecomastia Consult With Dr. Rhee!
If you are interested in learning more about our Male Breast Reduction surgery, or if you wish to determine whether you are a candidate for the procedure, please do not hesitate to get in touch with our office in Huntington, NY. Call (631) 424-6707 today or go to our contact page and fill out the appointment request form. Dr. Charlotte Ann Rhee looks forward to serving you!