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What is Gynecomastia?

Gynecomastia is the condition of enlarged or overdeveloped breasts in men. It can occur at any age, as the result of hormonal changes, obesity, or the use of certain drugs. Dr. Yee—our experienced plastic surgeon—encourages patients to work with their primary care physicians to ensure that any medications responsible for gynecomastia are minimized prior to considering surgery, as well as ensuring that no disease is responsible for hormonal changes causing gynecomastia.

Benefits of Gynecomastia Surgery

Gynecomastia can be in one or both breasts, and involve excess glandular tissue, fat, or skin, or a combination of these. Surgical treatment of gynecomastia is a male breast reduction, also known as reduction mammoplasty. The goal of reduction mammoplasty is to remove the excess tissue and reposition the nipple when necessary, with a minimum of scars, to create a flatter chest contour.

Candidates for Gynecomastia Surgery

You may be a good candidate for reduction mammoplasty if you are fairly normal in weight, physically healthy, and do not smoke or use drugs. Ideally your breast development/size is stable at the time of surgery.

The Male Breast Reduction Procedure

Dr. Yee performs different procedures for gynecomastia based on the degree of breast enlargement, incorporating liposuction and direct excision when appropriate. The incisions for male reduction mammoplasty are less standardized than for women, in part because the size and shape of enlarged male breasts vary so much; Dr. Yee creates an individualized plan based on your anatomy and goals. Generally the procedure is performed under general anesthesia.

Recovery from Gynecomastia Surgery

After surgery, you will have elastic support garments to help treat swelling and maintain your new chest contour. Depending on the type of surgery, you may have also have drains. It is important that the surgical site not have excessive pressure, stretch, or abrasion during the first few weeks of early healing, so although you may feel ready to go back to work after a week or two, you should only resume your exercise regimen slowly under Dr. Yee’s guidance.

If you are interested in improving your chest contour by addressing excess chest tissue, please call or contact Dr. Yee’s office online to plan a consultation.