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Male Breast Surgery

All men have a small amount of breast tissue that can respond to fluctuations in hormone levels, especially during puberty. Teenage boys can develop enlarged breasts, which may last for several years. However, as hormone levels begin to settle, the breasts usually return to normal.
Men’s breast tissues respond to hormone levels, and some of these men develop noticeable enlargement in their breasts when these hormones fluctuate. When the hormone levels settle, the breasts usually return to normal; however, if the breasts remain enlarged, surgical treatment may become necessary.

Enlarged male breasts are known as gynecomastia, and this condition can cause physical and emotional discomfort. Gynecomastia is a mixture of fat and breast tissue, similar to that of a female patient. Dr. Goldschmidt offers gynecomastia surgery, or male breast reduction, for his Cleveland, Ohio, patients to remove excess fat and tissue from the breasts. This provides a tighter, more masculine chest contour.

Causes

Gynecomastia develops for many reasons and can result in a troublesome appearance. All men have a small amount of breast tissue that fluctuates in size, especially in times like puberty. While gynecomastia stables and reverts for some patients, others find that surgical treatment is required. Contributing factors include glandular problems (caused by hormones or a testicular or pituitary tumors), side effects of medication (such as medication for prostate enlargement), and drug or alcohol use. Male patients who are concerned with the size of their breasts and whose breast development has stabilized should schedule a consultation with Dr. Goldschmidt. Every situation is slightly different, so evaluation will be necessary to determine the best course of action.

Procedure

Mild enlargement of the breasts may only require liposuction to reduce breast fat. In cases of moderate enlargement, liposuction can be combined with the surgical removal of excess breast tissue. Ultrasonic liposuction (VASERlipo®) can often be used to break up fatty tissue and assist in skin tightening. Severe cases of breast enlargement, and sometimes massive weight loss, may require traditional breast surgery to remove additional loose skin and breast tissue and reposition the nipples.

Recovery

Patients typically experience discomfort, swelling, and bruising for the first few days of their gynecomastia surgery recovery. A compression garment should be worn to support your chest as it heals. In some cases, a small drainage tube may be applied under the skin to drain any excess blood or fluid. Many patients resume work after a few days, but it can a few weeks for you to fully recover. All postoperative instructions should be followed carefully to minimize the risk of complications.

Results

Male breast surgery is designed to reduce the size of the breasts and reshape the chest contour for a natural, masculine appearance. Results are usually visible immediately and improve over time. As swelling and bruising resolve, the incisions should begin to fade and satisfaction with your new body contour should continue to grow while you recover. Most men find that their gynecomastia surgery scars are easy to conceal.

Risks

All surgeries carry some risk of problems afterward. Fortunately, these risks are rare. The most common issues following gynecomastia surgery are skin irregularities, asymmetry, nipple numbness, scarring, residual glandular tissue, healing problems, and pain.

What is the average cost of gynecomastia surgery?

The cost of your gynecomastia surgery will depend on the extent of your procedure. Gynecomastia surgery is tailored to the specific needs of the patient. Some men require liposuction while others benefit from skin and tissue excision. The final price will reflect the techniques applied and factor in additional fees from the anesthetic, facility, and post-surgical dressings.

Is gynecomastia surgery safe?

Gynecomastia is a safe procedure that rarely results in any long-term complications. Unfortunately, as with any surgical procedure, risks are present. Gynecomastia surgery side effects include:

  • Anesthesia risks
  • Infection
  • Bleeding
  • Blood clots
  • Change in skin or nipple sensation
  • Fat necrosis
  • Poor wound healing

Does insurance cover gynecomastia surgery?

Gynecomastia surgery is considered to be an elective, cosmetic procedure and is therefore not covered by insurance. Dr. Goldschmidt offers financing options through CareCredit™ and United Medical Credit.

Can gynecomastia surgery cause cancer?

There is no link between gynecomastia surgery and an increased risk of cancer. If anything, since gynecomastia surgery removes excess breast tissue, it may reduce your risk because there is less tissue present to develop cancer. Ultimately, gynecomastia or gynecomastia surgery have no impact on cancer risk.

Does gynecomastia surgery leave scars?

For patients who undergo skin or tissue excision, scars will be present at the incision sites. These incisions will be made around the areola or in the natural creases of the skin so that they will be well hidden and easily concealed. For men who are concerned about the development of scars, they should keep their healing incisions out of the sun, avoid excess stress and trauma on the area during recovery, and use silicone strips and gel to minimize the brightness of scars. All scars will fade with time.

For more information about Male Breast Surgery or to schedule your Male Breast Surgery consultation with Dr. Matt Goldschmidt, please call (216) 350-3175.
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