What is male breast reduction?
Male breast reduction surgery is a common and popular procedure that removes excess fat and tissue from male breasts, and flattens skin to improve shape and contours, leading to a more pleasing and masculine appearance for men with enlarged breasts.
Why choose male breast reduction?
For a number of men, having enlarged breasts (gynaecomastia) can cause embarrassment, distress, and a loss of confidence. When men have large breasts it is often linked with obesity, but this is not always the cause. Hereditary factors also contribute. In certain cases, men can have abnormal glandular breast tissue growth, often associated with a hormone imbalance, possibly heightened levels of the female hormone oestrogen. Other potential causes of enlarged breasts may be: excess alcohol consumption, drugs such as anabolic steroids, or a big loss of weight resulting in sagging skin.
What is involved in male breast reduction surgery?
Surgery is performed either with sedatives and local anaesthetic, or under general anaesthetic, and takes between one and three hours depending on the individual.
If the condition is caused mainly by excess fatty tissue (pseudo-gynaecomastia) then liposuction will be probably be used. This is a technique where fat cells are broken down and then sucked out via a hollow tube (cannula). Small incisions are made at the areola to allow the cannula to enter, and after the process is finished the incision is stitched. The scars usually heal very well and are not too noticeable.
If the condition is caused by excess glandular tissue (gynaecomastia), liposuction is sometimes not adequate. Small incisions are made at the edge of the areola and glandular tissue is then cut away using a scalpel. In certain cases liposuction may be used in conjunction with this technique. If a large amount of tissue is removed, this may necessitate larger incisions and the removal of excess skin.
What happens after male breast reduction surgery?
After male breast reduction surgery, a drain is sometimes required to ensure that excess fluids or blood does not build up in the body. A pressure garment should be worn for around one to four weeks to re drape the skin and for this time the chest will remain tender. Painkillers can be used to alleviate any discomfort.
Male chest reduction surgery is usually performed as either a day case, but sometimes the patient is required to stay in hospital overnight. It’s recommended that you take two to three days off work, and that you don’t do anything strenuous or play sport for up to four weeks.
Dr. Salil Bharadwaj
(Plastic, Cosmetic & Reconstructive Surgery Consultant)