Male Breast Reduction
Gynecomastia accounts for more than 65% of all male breast disorders, and luckily, more and more men are realizing that this condition can be safely and effectively treated with male breast reduction surgery. In fact, more than 20,000 male breast reduction surgeries were performed in 2012, up 5% from 2011. Men everywhere are realizing that they no longer need to put up with aesthetically unappealing breasts, but instead, can achieve their ideal contoured, well-formed chest!
What is Gynecomastia?
Gynecomastia is a medical condition referring to the presence of abnormally large breasts in men, generally caused by the body’s production of excess glandular breast tissue, excess fatty tissue, or a combination of both. Gynecomastia can present itself in different degrees, most commonly categorized as mild, high, visible, or feminine. This is based on chest size, femininity and severity of the condition. While in some cases gynecomastia may be the result of genetics or natural hormonal imbalances, it may also be caused by medical conditions or illness, as well as the use of certain drugs or medications. It can also be caused by significant weight gain. Whatever the underlying causation, gynecomastia can have emotional and psychological ramifications for men who suffer from it.
Causes of Gynecomastia
Gynecomastia has several factors that can lead to its onset; the majority of them have to do with an increased level of estrogen.
Increased Estrogen Level
Men’s bodies naturally create testosterone and estrogen. Estrogen has a direct correlation to increased glandular tissue, but this is generally is not an issue for men since estrogen’s ratio is so small compared to testosterone. However, with factors such as all the below mentioned, estrogen levels can become skewed and increase, causing enlarged male breasts. This does not cause any physical harm, but it can be a source of embarrassment or self-consciousness.
Drugs and Medications
Certain drugs and medications can manipulate sex hormone levels. Marijuana has been linked to a decrease in testosterone, and steroids have been known to increase estrogen levels. Antidepressants and blood pressure medication can also alter normal levels.
Klinefelter Syndrome is a genetically gained condition where men gain an X chromosome in addition to the normal male XY genetic makeup. This does not affect everyone visibly, but some men with this condition may experience little body hair, weak muscles, and/or large male breasts.
The thyroid is responsible for controlling hormone production, but on occasions, functionality of this gland can become disturbed. This occurrence is referred to as hyperthyroidism. Hyperthyroidism can throw off normal sex hormone levels, creating more estrogen for some men.
When men age, the body procedures more of the enzyme aromatase. This enzyme is responsible for converting estrone and androstenedione into estrogen, potentially causing an increase in glandular tissue.
During your initial consultation with one of our 3 expert chest sculpting surgeons, you can explain the concerns you have with the appearance of your chest. Bringing a photo of desired results can help greatly. Your surgeon will examine your chest and assess whether you suffer from gynecomastia, pseudogynecomastia, or both and recommend a procedure technique appropriately.
Breast reduction surgery for men is an outpatient procedure, and can generally be performed using local anesthesia with oral sedation. The glandular tissue / fatty tissue ratio differs for each patient; our expert male breast reduction surgeon Dr Mohamed El Assal is skilled at identifying the difference and recommending a procedure appropriately. For most patients, the procedure is done with a specialized Vaser with liposuction to remove or sculpt glandular tissue appropriately, leaving enough for a chiseled contour. Using small incisions in the axillae (armpit area), this technique avoids incisions and scars on the breast or near the nipples. If desired, your surgeon can relocate the nipples to a proportionate placement. For some patients a very small incision is made in the nipple area to remove the glandular tissue. This procedure is extremely effective and results in a flatter breast with a smooth contour to the chest. Surgical dressing and a compression garment are then wrapped around your chest. The procedure can generally be performed in about an hour and a half.
In most cases, gynecomastia correction surgery is permanent, but breasts may increase in size if the
patient gains a significant amount of weight, increasing levels of adipose (fatty)tissues. After your male breast reduction surgery is complete, the incisions will be covered with dressings or bandages and you will be asked to wear a compression garment or elastic bandage to reduce swelling. Most patients will feel tired and sore for several days after surgery, but can usually return to work in just three days; however, complete recovery, including the resumption of rigorous exercise and athletic pursuits, may take between three to four weeks.