The enlargement of a man’s breasts is a condition known as gynecomastia. About 50% of men – and even teenage boys – have enlarged breasts, and they can interfere with the quality of life that a man has due to the psychological impact. Teens could have enlarged breasts because of changing levels of sex hormones, and in 90% of these cases, the enlarged breasts will resolve on its own. However, for adult men, this is not the case.
Gynecomastia is a condition that has a successful surgical solution. The large breasts may be corrected or improved in a safe way through male breast reduction surgery.
What Causes Enlarged Male Breasts?
If your body has accumulated excess fatty tissue in the breast region, this is called pseudogynecomastia. If your nipples have become enlarged, it’s an indication that the glands in the breast also have enlarged. With this type of gynecomastia, diet and exercise won’t be enough to eliminate it. You’ll most likely need breast reduction surgery.
There are several different reasons why your breasts could have enlarged.
- Your body is accumulating estrogen mimickers from environmental chemicals and/or pollution, which causes the production of excess breast tissue. Extra estrogen can always be expected to cause larger breasts.
- Your levels of testosterone have dwindled due to old age and your estrogen levels have risen too high, due to excess fat tissue.
- You are taking medications that cause an enlargement in the breasts. Believe it or not some antibiotics, cancer drugs and other medications can cause this condition.
- An overactive thyroid gland can cause enlarged breasts in men.
- Liver or kidney problems may cause gynecomastia.
- Sometimes, a tumor may cause gynecomastia.
- Vitamin and mineral deficiencies or calorie malnutrition may cause enlarged breasts.
Are You a Candidate for Male Breast Reduction?
You might be a good candidate for male breast reduction if you are:
- Healthy and emotionally stable.
- Within your ideal body weight.
- Affected by gynecomastia on one or both breasts.
- Over 18 years old. Teens are advised to wait until after puberty as the breasts may still be developing.
- Good skin elasticity.
You may NOT be a good candidate if you are:
- Unhealthy, or have serious medical conditions making you unfit for surgery.
- Unrealistic about what to expect.
Before undergoing male breast reduction, you will need to provide a complete medical history. This will allow your surgeon to check for a range of medical conditions that may have caused gynecomastia. These include impaired liver function and the use of anabolic steroids or medications containing estrogen. Smoking marijuana or drinking alcohol excessively has also been shown to lead to male breast development. Its possible, these medical causes could be corrected without surgery. If not addressed prior to male breast reduction surgery, medical causes could result in the development of additional breast tissue following your procedure.
Some surgical methods used to treat gynecomastia include:
- The Webster Incision: This is one of the most common methods used to treat gynecomastia. An incision is made underneath the areola (nipple itself) in the dark skin and is only in the lower half.
- The Minimally Invasive Method: In these methods, a very small incision is made at the edge of the nipple. The incision is about 5 mm for the excess glandular tissue to be removed following liposuction. The major benefit of this technique is the smaller incision.
- Ultrasonic Liposuction Method: Ultrasound may also be used to correct the breast enlargement if the cause of the breast enlargement is not glandular. In this method, the chances for nipple distortion to occur are low however few patients can be adequately treated with liposuction by itself.
The scars are smallest if the enlargement is fat alone and larger if your chest is similar to female-looking breasts.
Things Not To Do Before Surgery
One Month Before Surgery
- Stop smoking or the using any nicotine containing products.
Two Weeks Before Surgery
- Avoid long periods of time in the sun and as well as tanning booths.
- Discontinue aspirin since it interferes with blood clotting.
- Discontinue the use of any medication that causes blood thinning.
- Discontinue the use of any vitamins or minerals that cause blood thinning. Ask your doctor for a complete list of these items.
- Schedule a leave of absence from work.
- Make a list of any responsibilities to your family, friends and work you will need to complete before surgery.
- Collect books and movies to keep busy and keep your mind off negative things after the surgery.
One Week Before Surgery
- If you get sick in any way, inform your doctor to see if he wants to reschedule the surgery.
- Make arrangements for help to and from the hospital, and for aftercare.
- Pack a few extra shirts as well, ones that are comfortable.
- Complete all items on the list of what to do before surgery.
- Rearrange your bathroom and kitchen cabinets so you won’t have to reach far for them after surgery.
The aim of this article is to give you a general information about the surgical intervention in question. You need to make more research about possible complications and risks of this selected procedure in order to make an informed decision. Please note that complications occur more frequently with patients who are obese, smoke, and have a history or lung or other chronic underlying medical conditions.
Smokers are recognized to have a significantly higher risk of post operative wound healing problems with a subsequently higher potential of infection as well as operative and post operative bleeding. Patients should discontinue smoking for two weeks before and two weeks after surgery. Although it helps to stop smoking before and after surgery, this does not completely eliminate the increased risks resulting from long term smoking. Smoking also has a long term adverse effect on the skin and ageing process.