Revealing the Secrets: An Inside Look at Gynecomastia Surgery

Gynecomastia surgery (male breast reduction) involves liposuction to remove excess fat and surgical excision of glandular tissue to sculpt a more masculine chest contour. Your cosmetic surgeon may also use a combination of the two techniques to achieve your desired results, says our plastic surgeon.

Gynecomastia can affect 40 to 60 percent of men, and is often caused by impaired liver function, use of anabolic steroids, marijuana and alcohol. The condition can also occur naturally with aging.

Removing Excess Breast Tissue

Gynecomastia surgery, also known as reduction mammaplasty, removes excess breast tissue from the male chest, eliminating what some men describe as “man boobs.” Excess glandular breast tissue and fat are surgically removed from the chest to create a more masculine chest contour.

In addition, the position and size of the areola can be altered to improve chest shape and proportions. The operation is performed using a variety of techniques, including ultrasound-assisted liposuction (UAL), direct excision and periareolar skin reduction. For patients with severe skin redundancy, a combination of techniques may be required to achieve optimal results.

Men who have enlarged breasts that are the result of hormone changes in adolescence or as a side effect of medications, such as steroids, can benefit from the procedure. The condition can cause embarrassment, reduce self-confidence and limit activity. Our Birmingham plastic surgeon can perform a physical evaluation during your consultation to determine whether you are a good candidate for the procedure.

If your gynecomastia is caused primarily by fat tissue, the excess can be reduced through liposuction techniques, which involve small incisions and the use of a thin tube called a cannula to suction away the unwanted fat from the chest. If a combination of fat and glandular breast tissue is the cause, the excess skin will need to be removed through excision methods. The surgical result will produce a flatter and more masculine chest that is resistant to future changes in weight, body composition and aging.

Reducing Swelling

Swelling after gynecomastia surgery is normal and will subside in a few weeks. It can be minimized by following your surgeon’s post-surgery instructions. You can also massage the chest to help the skin soften and stretch. Do this several times a day for 20 minutes or more until the skin feels smooth and even. You can use a lubricant such as vaseline, olive oil or almond oil for this purpose. It is important to avoid strenuous exercise, especially weight lifting, for 6 weeks after surgery. If you must exercise, choose low impact cardio workouts.

Once the swelling is gone, you’ll be able to see your new results. You’ll have a flatter, more masculine chest that will make you feel more confident in your appearance. You can also feel better about yourself because you’ll be able to participate in activities that you previously avoided because of your enlarged breasts.

Gynecomastia is common and affects between 40 and 60 percent of men. It can be inherited, or it may occur due to obesity, changes in hormones, and certain medications like steroids. It can cause severe embarrassment, discomfort and a loss of self-confidence. If you’re considering gynecomastia, consult with your plastic surgeon to learn more about the benefits and risks of this procedure. You should also discuss your expectations for surgery to be sure you’re a good candidate.

Reducing Pain

Men who have gynecomastia experience pain, chafing and skin irritation in the chest area from wearing tight clothing. Gynecomastia surgery eliminates these problems and allows them to wear shirts without discomfort or embarrassment.

The procedure is quick and uses local anaesthesia and sedation to minimize any discomfort. Incisions are made in the breast, and the glandular tissue and excess fat are removed from the area. The incisions are closed with absorbable sutures and the chest area is bandaged to support healing. It generally takes about 2 hours to complete the surgical process and you may be discharged on the same day of surgery.

Following gynecomastia surgery, some patients experience achy or tight chest muscles and areas of decreased feeling (numbness) in the chest for 2-3 days. This is normal and will improve as swelling goes down. You should not exercise or lift heavy objects during this time. Your surgeon will provide specific patient care instructions and advice about the use of compression garments and any drains you might have.

Gynecomastia is a common condition affecting up to 40 percent of adult men. It usually occurs around puberty, but it can also appear during middle age and is linked to obesity, impaired liver function and the use of medications or anabolic steroids that affect hormones. In some cases, gynecomastia can even develop in extremely lean men.

Increasing Self-Confidence

The condition that causes gynecomastia isn’t life-threatening, but it can make men feel self-conscious about their appearance. This can negatively impact their self-esteem and affect how they interact with other people.

The good news is that gynecomastia surgery can help restore a more masculine chest contour. It removes the lumps and bumps that create the feminine appearance that many men are dissatisfied with. It also reduces the chafing and tenderness that can cause discomfort in this area.

In addition, the procedure can help reduce depression that some men experience due to their body image issues. It’s important to note that gynecomastia reduction doesn’t eliminate depression, but it can offer a positive change in how men feel about their bodies and the way they interact with other people.

Besides the physical benefits of gynecomastia treatment, it can improve a man’s confidence by giving him a more masculine figure. Gynecomastia surgery can also reduce the risk of social anxiety, allowing a man to enjoy activities like playing sports or going swimming according to our plastic surgeon.


If you’re suffering from gynecomastia, the first step is to meet with a plastic surgeon. Be sure to provide your medical history, including any underlying conditions or medications you’re taking. Your doctor will examine your chest to determine the cause of the gynecomastia and recommend the appropriate treatment.

Syed Qasim

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