Male Breast Reduction
Breast reduction, technically known as reduction mammaplasty,
is a surgical procedure designed to remove fat, glandular
tissue, and skin from the breasts, making them smaller,
lighter, and firmer. This procedure can also reduce
the size of the areola, the darker skin surrounding
Gynecomastia (enlargement of the male breast) is not
an uncommon condition, affecting as many as 40 percent
of men. This condition may affect either one or both
breasts. The majority of the cases have no known cause
while the others might be related to the use of certain
drugs and or medical conditions.
The goal of breast reduction is to create smaller,
better-shaped breasts in proportion with the rest of
How is male breast reduction performed?
The type of procedure used by your surgeon will depend
on the degree of breast enlargement. The options include
removal of the tissue under the breast, or liposuction
of the chest wall. In both instances, a small elliptical
incision is made on the lower half of the nipple area
(areola). For those men with tissue that is more glandular
in nature, all breast tissue directly under the nipple
If the tissue is more fatty in nature, liposuction
can provide excellent results. In some people, ultrasonic
assisted liposuction is an excellent approach. During
liposuction, a small suction rod (cannula) is inserted
into the incision to remove fat and other tissue.
In some cases, a repeat procedure is necessary to remove
tissue that was missed during the first procedure. In
a few cases, if there is a large amount of extra skin,
it may be necessary to remove this tissue, which may
result in a large scar.
How long does male breast reduction
The procedure usually takes one to two hours.
What type of anesthesia is used?
Male breast reductions are performed under local anesthesia
combined with a sedative to make you feel drowsy and
relaxed. General anesthesia may also be used, causing
you to be asleep during the whole procedure.
Where is the procedure performed?
This procedure is usually performed on an outpatient
basis, in the surgeon's office-based surgical suite,
an outpatient surgery center or hospital.
When can I return home and resume
Generally breast reduction is done on an ambulatory
basis but in some cases may require an overnight stay.
However, it is necessary that you have someone pick
you up after the procedure and assist you with your
daily activities for the first 24 hours.
Most men return to their usual activities in one week.
However, you must not lift anything for the first two
weeks and do no heavy lifting for the first four weeks.
Avoid raising your arms above your head for at least
How do I prepare for the male breast
During your initial consultation, your surgeon will
discuss the changes that you would like to make to your
appearance. Since the appearance of your breasts is
a matter of personal perception and preference, you
will need to discuss your concerns in detail so your
surgeon can determine the appropriate alternatives.
Your surgeon will explain how your age, the size and
shape of your breasts, and the condition of your skin
may affect the results of this procedure. You also should
make arrangements ahead of time for someone to drive
you to and from your procedure and to assist you with
your daily activities during your recovery period.
Prior to your surgical procedure, the surgeon will
perform a complete health history and physical. This
will include examining and measuring your breasts, as
well as photographing them as a frame of reference during
the surgery and afterwards. Your surgeon may also require
you to have a mammogram (breast x-ray). Knowledge of
your allergies, medications and previous surgeries should
be brought to your surgeon's attention at this time.
Specific instructions to assist you in preparing for
this procedure will be given to you after the health
history and physical is complete. Depending on your
individual health status, the instructions may include
guidelines regarding your diet, alcohol intake, smoking
and which medications to take or avoid. Your experience
will be much smoother if you remain compliant with your
What precautions are necessary during
Light activities can be resumed within a few days,
although your chest will be sore. Most people are able
to return to work within three to seven days, and resume
more strenuous activities in two to three weeks. You
should avoid exposing the operated area to the sun for
at least six months to prevent permanently altering
the skin pigmentation.
Routine physical activity and exercising (especially
lifting, pulling and pushing motions) should be avoided
for at least six weeks. This will help the scars to
heal. Your doctor will advise you on the level of physical
activity that is appropriate for you. Some degree of
swelling and bruising may last for three to six months.
What are the possible complications
after male breast reduction surgery?
All surgery has some potential risks, including the
risks of bleeding, reaction to the anesthetic, and infection.
In this surgery, serious complications are quite rare.
Other potential risks include; excessive fluid loss,
skin injury, rippling of the skin, excessive scarring,
pigmentation changes, altered sensation. Like all body
contouring surgery, it is possible that either too much
or too little tissue can be removed. In these cases,
a second procedure may be necessary.
What results can I expect after male
breast reduction surgery?
Usually, the chest is temporarily swollen and bruised
after the surgery. You may also experience numbness
or a burning sensation. You will probably be given a
compression garment to wear for several weeks after
the surgery. If you have severe pain or discharge in
the surgical area, or if you experience muscle aches,
dizziness or a general ill feeling with fever, nausea
or vomiting, you should call your doctor immediately.
After healing, most men are very happy with the results.
Choosing the right surgeon
To obtain further information regarding ear surgery,
we advise you to consult with a qualified and experienced
board-certified plastic surgeon. Regardless of the type
of procedure you are considering, it is crucial to choose
the right surgeon for your individual goals. To receive
a complimentary consultation with a specialist in your
area, simply fill out our Online
Referral Form or call Toll