Gynecomastia is a condition that causes excess fat growth and enlarged breast size in men. This condition can affect men of all ages, sizes, and weight. This can commonly affect both breasts (bilateral); however, some men do experience this on one side only (unilateral). Many men are affected by gynecomastia, and while sometimes the cause is unknown, there are some conditions that can exacerbate this issue. These causes include:
- Steroid or other drug use
- Hormonal imbalances
Dr. Behmand offers male breast reduction as a solution for patients who have gynecomastia. This procedure is designed to remove any glandular tissue and excess fat from the breast area. The result is a firmer, flatter, and more traditionally masculine-looking chest.
Candidates for Male Breast Reduction
The best candidates for male breast reduction include:
- Healthy men
- Men that are of a normal weight
- Men whose breast size cannot be reduced by means other than surgery
- Men that do not use drugs or steroids
- Men who have struggled with large breasts for an extended period of time
- Young men or adults that suffer from bullying or taunting due to the size of their breasts
Because of the many causes of gynecomastia, Dr. Behmand will discuss lifestyle changes that may naturally reduce the amount of existing breast tissue during the initial consultation.
Patients who are obese should first attempt to lose weight through exercise and diet. Certain drugs, such as anabolic steroids, can also cause gynecomastia. Use of these substances should be discontinued before attempting male breast reduction.
- What is gynecomastia?
- Gynecomastia is a male breast reduction surgery. This procedure is designed for men who have developed excess breast tissue on one or both breasts, commonly due to fluctuations in hormones or from a weight gain. Patients with gynecomastia are not able to lose the excess breast tissue with weight-loss.
- Who is a good candidate for gynecomastia?
- Any male patient that has excessive breast growth on one or both breasts, and who is also in generally good health.
- Can gynecomastia be covered by my insurance?
- In some circumstances, yes. This is a difficult procedure for insurance to approve. It is necessary to come in for a consultation and allow Dr. Behmand to evaluate you to see if he thinks you are a good candidate for this procedure. If you meet the requirements for insurance coverage, our office will apply for prior authorization, which can take 2-3 weeks or more.
- What will my recovery be like?
- Most patients prefer to take 1 to 2 weeks off of work for their recovery. You will also have physical restrictions for at least 4 to 6 weeks following surgery. During this time, you cannot exercise, go to the gym, or engage in any strenuous activity. You will need to minimize your arm movements as well, to help optimize recovery (no lifting, pulling, or stretching).
The Male Breast Reduction Procedure
Depending on the type and amount of breast tissue present, Dr. Behmand may use one of two male breast reduction techniques. If the gynecomastia is caused mostly by excess fat, Dr. Behmand will be able to treat the condition using only liposuction. Through a tiny incision, he will suction out the fat with a small tube called a cannula. This will leave a small incision that will go unnoticed to the untrained eye.
For breast enlargement that is caused by both glandular tissue and fatty deposits, Dr. Behmand will generally surgically remove the excess breast tissue with an incision located around the lower half of the areola (nipple) and use liposuction to remove and contour the excess fatty tissue. Again, the incisions will be small and, while slightly more noticeable at first, will typically start to lighten and fade dramatically with proper postoperative care of the incisions. In more advanced cases of gynecomastia it may be necessary to remove excess skin along with the excess fat and breast tissues. This type of operation typically requires additional incisions, often in the crease under the breast.
After Your Male Breast Reduction Surgery
Shortly after the male breast reduction procedure, you will be released home to begin recovery in the comfort of your own surroundings.
After surgery, you might experience moderate bruising and swelling in the chest area. You will be provided with a post-surgical compression garment, which looks similar to a men’s undershirt and typically is easily concealed under your normal clothing. This garment will help to reduce swelling and improve final chest contour while making recovery more comfortable.
Some mild discomfort for the first few days after surgery is normal, so we do ask that you remain off of work or school for approximately one week after the procedure for optimal comfort. Most bruising and swelling will subside after two weeks or so, with the majority of the swelling gone at six weeks after the operation. During your consultation with Dr. Behmand, he’ll be able to give you specific post-operative instructions that will help make your gynecomastia treatment a success.
Surgery can vary depending on the length of time in surgery, if liposuction is recommended at the same time, and type of gynecomastia surgery recommended, but is generally between $8,000 and $15,000.
If you suffer from gynecomastia, we encourage you to contact our office today for a consultation with Dr. Behmand.