No matter how much you diet and exercise, nothing seems to help reduce the size of your dreaded “man boobs.” You may feel acutely embarrassed when taking off your shirt in the locker room, at the community pool or during intimate moments – or, sometimes, you’re uncomfortable about the way your chest looks, even when you have your shirt on.
If this sounds familiar to you, you may be among the many men with gynecomastia, which is a medical condition that causes men to develop excess breast tissue.
What Causes Gynecomastia?
A wide variety of factors * can cause men to develop unwanted breast tissue, including genetics, obesity, hormonal imbalance, aging and your use of specific prescription medications. The most common signs of gynecomastia include swelling and tenderness in the breast tissue. Though it isn’t normally a cause for serious medical concern, gynecomastia can negatively affect your body image and self-confidence.
The best candidates for male breast reduction surgery are in good overall health, are nonsmokers, have good skin elasticity and have a realistic idea of what results they can expect. Once a board-certified surgeon such as Dr. Michael Kulick has evaluated your medical history your next step may be to undergo a mammogram or breast X-ray if it is felt to be of diagnostic value. During the consultation, the doctor will need to assess how much fat, glandular material and excess skin you have to determine whether this procedure is right for you.
Gynecomastia Has Wide-Ranging Effects
Gynecomastia is far more than just a cosmetic issue. For men living with this condition, excess breast tissue can be a very real factor that causes reduced self-esteem and quality of life, and can even lead to mental health issues such as social anxiety.
If you have gynecomastia, you might struggle to sculpt a more masculine-looking chest, even if you spend hours doing targeted chest exercises like pullovers and bench presses. In cases where gynecomastia is the result of excess glandular tissue, exercise and dietary changes alone may not diminish the size of your breasts.
Men seeking male breast reduction surgery have absolutely no reason to feel ashamed. In fact, experts estimate as many as 60 percent of men ** have gynecomastia at some point in their lives, so it is becoming increasingly popular for men to get this surgical procedure to remove excess tissue and fat and restore their self-esteem.
What Are My Options for Improving Gynecomstia?
As a qualified cosmetic surgeon, Dr. Kulick is proud to offer male breast reduction as a specialty in his state-of-the-art San Francisco practice. In general, during a male breast reduction surgery, the doctor will remove extra glandular breast tissue, fat and occasionally, skin is removed. However, because no two patients are alike, Dr. Kulick will take time to craft a surgical plan that’s tailored to your unique needs and the outcomes you are hoping to achieve.
Surgical approaches to gynecomastia include liposuction, excision of excess breast tissue or a combination of both approaches. You may choose to get liposuction in other areas of your body where you have frustrating fat deposits as well.
Recovering From Male Breast Reduction Surgery
Gynecomastia surgery is an outpatient procedure. After your surgery, Dr. Kulick and his staff will send you home with detailed instructions that will include how to care for your incision sites, medications to take to minimize discomfort and reduce the potential for infection, specific concerns to look for at the surgical site or in your general health and when to return for your follow-up appointments. Typically a compressive garment is worn around the chest region for 2-4 weeks.
During your consultation, come prepared with a list of specific questions about what you can expect during your individual recovery period, such as the following.
- What prescription or over-the-counter drugs will I have to take after my surgery?
- How long will I have to wear support garments after my surgery?
- When can I expect my stitches to be removed?
- When can I return to my normal activities?
- When will I come back for my follow-up care?
As you heal, it’s vital to follow all post-surgical instructions to the letter and attend follow-up visits as scheduled.
The final results of gynecomastia surgery are permanent for many patients. However, if you developed gynecomastia due to weight gain or the use of certain medications, you must commit to maintaining your target body weight and remaining fully free of those drugs to maintain your surgical outcomes.
Take the Next Step – Schedule a Consultation Today
Undergoing male breast reduction surgery is a highly personal decision, but the results of this procedure can be truly life-changing for men who are living with this condition. If you are considering getting this surgery to remove excess breast tissue, call 415-956-2550 or fill out this online contact form to schedule your private consultation with Dr. Kulick. With more than 20 years of experience, Dr. Kulick has built a reputation as one of the most well-respected cosmetic surgeons in the San Francisco Bay area.
* Source: mayoclinic.org, March 2018
** Source: cbsnews.com, December 2010