Gynecomastia is the enlargement of the gland tissue of the male breast. It can occur during infancy, puberty, and in middle-aged to older men. Gynecomastia is the most common reason for the medical evaluation of the male breast.
Gynecomastia correction is a surgical procedure that reduces the size and reshapes the contour of male breasts by removing excess breast tissue and fat. It may also involve the removal of excess breast skin with repositioning and reduction of the areola (dark skin surrounding the nipple).
Men with sagging or excess breast tissue can experience both emotionally and physical discomfort. Men with Gynecomastia may avoid exercise or social activities because they may be self-conscious about their breast size.
During puberty, the enlargement and tenderness of the breasts should last no longer than two to three years and be completely resolved by the age of 18 years. Though it is not uncommon in older males, Gynecomastia is often associated with obesity, endocrinologic (hormonal) disorders, liver disease, or medicinal side effects. Although exercise, weight loss, and lifestyle changes are recommended, the condition often exhibits a minimal response to these interventions.
Gynecomastia correction surgery is usually done in an outpatient or hospital setting and consists of two types of procedures.
- If the problem involves mostly fatty tissue and little breast gland, the correction is usually done with liposuction utilizing small incisions or possibly by ultrasonic assisted liposuction.
- If there is a large amount of breast gland, larger incisions may be needed to remove excess glandular tissue and skin.
The surgery will take one to three hours depending upon its extent. Scarring is a result of any surgery, but the external scarring becomes less noticeable with time. Sensitivity in the breast and nipple is usually reduced and the feeling may not return for several months. Asymmetry and under-correction are common problems and may result in the need for surgical revision.
Following the procedure, you will experience mild to moderate pain for several days, but it can be controlled with medication. Swelling and skin discoloration will partially subside in a week or two and stitches will be removed in that time frame. Most patients return to work in a few days to a week and gradually resume more strenuous fitness and physical activities after three to four weeks.