What is breast reduction?
Breast reduction involves removing excess breast tissue through surgery and/or by removing excess fat with liposuction from the chest area. The procedure requires an incision along the lower half of the areola and through this incision the fat is removed using liposuction and the breast tissue through direct excision. This combination allows the chest to be as flat as possible. Surgical incisions are placed inconspicuously and scars fade over time.
Who is a candidate for breast reduction?
Approximately 15% of American men have breasts larger than desired. Often gynecomastia, excess male breast tissue, is physiologic, meaning there is no stimulus causing the excess breast tissue; but gynecomastia can be due to a range of issues, including hormonal imbalances, certain types of prescription medicines, steroid use, and marijuana use. Despite consistent exercise and weight control, these men’s breasts don’t look the way they want them to.
Men who are physically healthy and maintaining a healthy weight are good candidates for breast reduction, especially if other treatments such as exercise and weight loss have not corrected the issue. If you are a teen and still growing, smoke marijuana, or use anabolic steroids, breast reduction surgery is not a good option as the breast tissue may enlarge after surgery. All patients should realize that by itself, breast reduction will not create a chiseled chest or pumped-up pectoral muscles.
Benefits of breast reduction
- Reduce large breasts and pronounced nipples
- Get a flatter, more athletic-looking chest
- Improve how you look in t-shirts, dress shirts, sweaters, and bare-chested
- Gain permanent results when you maintain a healthy weight
Recovery and results
Breast reduction surgery is an outpatient surgical procedure, so typically, patients return home the day of surgery. The procedure is performed using general anesthesia for optimal results and safety, so make sure to arrange for a friend or family member to drive you home and stay with you overnight. Patients leave the operating room wearing a compression garment, and should wear it or a tight-fitting workout shirt, for six weeks post surgery. The garment can be worn inconspicuously under any type of shirt. Swelling increases for approximately three days post surgery. Although you will need to limit strenuous activity for three to four weeks, you should be able to return to work within a week or two. You will begin to see results three weeks after surgery, most of the swelling will be gone in six weeks, and you will notice subtle improvement for six months.