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Gynecomastia — And What You Can Do About It

Posted February 15, 2019

Gynecomastia is a very common condition that men and boys often suffer from. The term refers to the unnatural swelling of breasts in men. Both men and women have breast glands, but in men, they are small and underdeveloped.

This enlargement of the breast glands can happen in newborns, boys during puberty, and in older men. In almost all cases, the condition is resolved over time as the hormones balance out. However, there is a chance of it not going away or recurring over a period of time.

It must be noted that Gynecomastia can not be completely resolved with an exercise routine or diet alone. It requires the skilled hands of a plastic surgeon who can carefully perform a male breast reduction surgery.

Surgical Solutions For Gynecomastia

The breast region consists of two kinds of tissues. The glandular tissue is firm and dense whereas the fatty tissue is soft. This ratio of glandular tissue and soft tissue varies from individual to individual and a man with Gynecomastia can have too much of both tissues.

The fat tissues in the breast region are usually removed through liposuction. The process involves draining the fat through a tube. The tube is inserted through a 3 to 4 millimeter incision. The glandular tissue, on the other hand, is excised.

This means that the excess glandular tissue is cut out and removed from the breast regions. The excision process usually leaves a scar around the nipple. In cases where both fat and glandular cells are to be eliminated, both liposuction and excision are used in combination. The greater the removal, the bigger the resulting post-surgical mark will be. Proper draining is implemented while making the excision to prevent excess bleeding and blood clots.

After the surgery, the chest will be bruised and swollen for up to two weeks. The patient may be required to wear a special compression garment during these first two weeks. The recovery time for the procedure is six weeks in total. During this period of time, patients are to refrain from performing strenuous activities.

There are usually no complications involved after the operation. Certain minor complication might include an uneven contour of the chest, insufficient removal of the tissue, or a numb sensation around the nipple.

Medication for Gynecomastia

Medicines that block the action of the female hormone estrogen in the human body is often used for various kinds of breast-related conditions, but it can also be used by men to reduce the enlargement of their breasts. One such drug that is popularly used is called Tamoxifen.

Added to this there are Aromatase inhibitors, which are usually used for treating breast and ovarian cancer, has also shown positive results in men with Gynecomastia. In older men with low levels of testosterone, the Gynecomastia can be treated with testosterone replacement.

Gynecomastia predominantly happens due to some form of hormonal imbalance in the human body. Both male and female bodies contain testosterone and estrogen. An imbalance of estrogen in males often results in Gynecomastia.

Contact Our Office in Northern Virginia

If you feel embarrassed to take your shirt off in public or you simply don’t like the way your body looks in certain clothes that you wear, then you should consider undergoing a male breast reduction surgery. Contact our office in Northern Virginia to schedule an appointment with skilled plastic surgeon Dr. Haven Barlow.

"The best thing about the surgery for me was how comforting Dr. Barlow was. Getting any surgery is always nerve wracking, but anytime Dr. Barlow came in the room and would begin talking ”all of my fears would go away."

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