While gynecomastia is a relatively common condition that has no medical urgency, visible male breasts can often cause insecurity and/or a negative self-image for men in San Antonio and around the world. In most cases, the excess breast tissue leading to the appearance of overdeveloped breasts is not something that can be corrected with dieting or exercise alone. Dr. John Ayala is a board-certified plastic surgeon who has helped countless men get rid of redundant breast tissue to restore the flat contours of their chest. If you would like to improve your gynecomastia, Dr. Ayala can evaluate your concerns and develop a customized treatment plan to attain the masculine look you desire.
- What is Gynecomastia?
- Gynecomastia Causes
- Male Breast Reduction Procedure
- Male Breast Reduction Recovery
- Male Breast Reduction Cost
What is Gynecomastia?
Gynecomastia refers to the overdevelopment of male breasts due to localized fat and/or glandular tissue in the chest. Sagging skin may also contribute to the appearance of enlarged breasts in men, with the condition typically presenting in either one or both sides of the chest. While gynecomastia can develop at any age, many men find that any excessive breast tissue present often resolves throughout puberty. However, individuals who have gynecomastia that does not self-correct can face a number of psychological and emotional difficulties, such as embarrassment, low self-esteem, and avoidance of any activities that may expose their condition. Gynecomastia may also cause physical symptoms like tenderness, sensitivity, swelling, and general discomfort around the nipples and breast tissue.
What Causes Gynecomastia?
The exact cause of gynecomastia is unknown, but there are many factors that may contribute to the development of enlarged breasts in men, including:
- Hormonal imbalances
- Weight gain
- Steroid use
- Certain medications
- Consumption of drugs and alcohol
Fortunately, gynecomastia can be addressed with a cosmetic surgery known as male breast reduction. This procedure can restore a more masculine aesthetic by extracting redundant tissue, repositioning and resizing the areolas (if necessary), and flattening the chest contours.
How is Gynecomastia Surgery Performed?
Male breast reduction typically involves minimal downtime and less noticeable scarring when compared to other surgical procedures, often allowing your results to appear as natural as possible. This outpatient procedure is commonly performed using two techniques, depending on the anatomical factors contributing to your gynecomastia:
Fat Removal with Liposuction
For some patients, enlarged male breasts are solely due to isolated fatty deposits in the chest. If excess fat is the primary reason for your gynecomastia, liposuction may be enough to level out the planes of the chest. During liposuction, a narrow cannula is inserted through a small incision to extract localized fat and flatten the chest. This technique is most successful when patients have good skin tone and elasticity. If you exhibit loose or stretched skin, Dr. Ayala may recommend combining liposuction with the removal of skin and glandular tissue.
Surgical Extraction of Glandular Breast Tissue
Most cases of gynecomastia are caused by a combination of both fatty and glandular tissue. While fat is capable of being reshaped non-surgically, excess glandular tissue is usually resistant to dieting and exercise. During male breast reduction, Dr. Ayala can remove fibrous breast tissue through a small, inconspicuous incision placed under the nipple. It is not uncommon to perform both liposuction and glandular tissue extraction during male breast reduction to achieve an optimal result.
What is Recovery From Male Breast Reduction Like?
The recovery period after gynecomastia surgery is usually described as minimal and well-tolerated. If your treatment plan only included liposuction, the healing process is often relatively shorter than procedures in which glandular tissue was removed. Most patients are able to return to non-strenuous work and normal activities within 7 to 10 days. Intense physical exercise should generally be avoided for at least four to six weeks. Swelling and minor bruising after surgery are normal reactions that should subside naturally as your body heals.
How Much Does Gynecomastia Surgery Cost?
Based on statistics provided by the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS), the average surgeon’s fee for male breast reduction is approximately $4,000. It’s important to note that this fee varies according to your geographic location and the quality of your surgeon. Furthermore, the price does not include the cost of anesthesia, the operating facility, or other associated expenses.
Our patient care coordinator will be able to provide you with a personalized cost estimate after Dr. Ayala evaluates your needs and the complexity of your procedure. While insurance typically doesn’t cover gynecomastia surgery, our practice accepts plastic surgery financing from CareCredit® for qualified patients who would like to pay for male breast reduction in a series of smaller, more manageable installments. If you have any questions, please call our office to speak to a member of our team about your payment options.
Dr. John Ayala can create a custom treatment plan to reduce overdeveloped breast tissue and help you achieve a more masculine appearance. For more information, or to schedule a consultation, please contact Ayala Plastic Surgery today.