Gynecomastia is a cosmetic problem in men. This issue does not have any health related problems. However, men often feel unconfident about their look. And this leads to many psychological problems. In many cases, psychologic problems are as bad as physiological problems. As medicine and medical technologies have advanced, gynecomastia surgery offers a solution to this problem.
In this article, we will look into definition of gynecomastia, types of gynecomastia, who needs this surgery, surgery itself and recovery process after this surgery. At the end of this article, you will know what this cosmetic problem is and how you can solve it.
What Is Gynecomastia?
Gynecomastia is enlargement of breast tissue in men. This breast tissue starts to look like women’s breasts. Over time, men feel uncomfortable about how they look. They don’t want to take their shirt off or swim in the sea or pool comfortably. Enlarged breasts will lead to unattractive look.
Breast enlargement in men is caused by different factors. Generally, fat accumulation is linked with genetics. If you have a family member with gynecomastia, you might also experience the same problem. Additionally, fat accumulation in breast might be caused by excessive weight gain. Even though you lose this weight, your breasts might still look fatty. Also, sports might not be able to fix that look.
Generally, gynecomastia is caused because of hormonal imbalance. Oestrogen hormone, which is the hormone responsible from breast growth, might increase in men. In fact, men also have this hormone as women have testosterone. But if oestrogen levels increase in men, breasts will start to grow. And this will cause gynecomastia which is also known as men boobs.
To solve this cosmetic problem, gynecomastia surgery can be conducted. Surgery type will depend on type of gynecomastia. It is important to choose the correct surgery method to achieve best gynecomastia operation results.
Types of Gynecomastia
There are four gynecomastia types. This problem is classified into four based on the severity of breast growth. Grade 1 indicate small breast enlargement. In this grade, there is no excess skin. In Grade 2, more fat is accumulated but there is still no excess skin. Grade 3 indicates moderate fat accumulation with excess skin. Grade 4 is the most severe case with high fat accumulation and excess fat.
When you visit your doctor, s/he will determine your gynecomastia grade. This grade is important as doctor will decide what type of gynecomastia surgery you need. Depending on your grade, you might need more aggressive treatment.
Who Are Good Gynecomastia Surgery Candidates?
First thing you need to be gynecomastia candidate is dissatisfaction with your looks. If your enlarged breasts are causing you trouble, it might be time to see a specialist. Afterwards, your doctor needs to examine you. During this examination, you need to take your shirt off. This way, doctor will determine grade of this cosmetic problem.
After your examination, you need to take some blood tests. These tests will determine if you can go under a surgery. Since this is a surgery, you will take general anaesthesia. For this reasons, you need complete blood tests to see if you can have general anaesthesia. Also, you need to have normal body mass index (BMI) to have this surgery. Excess weight might cause breast development after the operation. To eliminate this problem, you might want to have your operation after losing some weight. If you show no problem after blood tests, you can book your gynecomastia surgery.
Types of Gynecomastia Surgery
Actually, there is two types of gynecomastia surgery. In severe cases like Grade 4, doctor might combine these two methods. Gynecomastia operation will be determined after detailed examination.
Liposuction is the most common method applied to solve gynecomastia problem. Before this operation, general anaesthesia is administrated. Afterwards, fat tissues in breast are collected with liposuction method.
In this method, small holes are opened on both breasts. Then, special cannula is places inside breast. This cannula is moved forward and backwards repeatedly. During this movement, fat tissues are broken down. These fat tissues are collected with vacuum.
After collecting necessary amount of fat tissues, small holes are sutures. There is almost no mark or scarring after the surgery.
Excision technique is often applied for Grade 3 and Grade 4 types. In this technique, glandular breast tissue is removed. Also, if there is excess skin, excision can remove that skins as well. As in liposuction, general anaesthesia is applied. Then, breast tissue is cut and removed. During excision, nipple might be repositioned as well. This step will be necessary if too much skin or fat tissue is removed. Afterwards, patients is sutured and operation is completed.
Liposuction and Excision
In some severe cases like Grade 4, both liposuction and excision might be necessary. Combination of both methods will enable doctor to remove excess fat and excess skin. When two techniques are combined, fat tissues are first collected by liposuction. Later, excess skin is removed with excision and nipple is repositioned.
Risks of Gynecomastia Surgery
In general, gynecomastia surgery is considered as one of the safe surgeries. However, there are risks associated with general anaesthesia. Before the operation, it is important to make all necessary blood tests to reduce risks associated with general anaesthesia.
There are blood cloth and bleeding risks. However, these are rare complications. Also, in some cases, nipple sensation might be decreases. Generally, nipple will get the sensation back in few months. There is also infection risk as in all other operations.
You will be informed about all risks associated with gynecomastia operation. You can also ask all you questions before the surgery. This way, you can have your operation at ease.
Recovery Process After Surgery
After the surgery, you will spend the first night at the hospital. After you drainage is removed, you are free to go home. Gynecomastia surgery recovery is relatively easy and painless. You need to take all prescribed medication. Your doctor will prescribe antibiotics and pain killers. Antibiotics will prevent risk of infection. On the other hand, you will need pain killers for the first couple of days.
Generally, you can go back to your normal life after couple of days. But you need to take care of your breasts for a while. You need to avoid any damage or impact. Impact might cause pain. Also, you might need to avoid heavy sports for couple of weeks. After fully recovering, you can go back to sports. You can have the flat chest you want after your gynecomastia surgery and spending some time at the gym.
Is Gynecomastia Surgery Permanent?
In most cases, gynecomastia results are permanent. But you might need to make some lifestyle changes. For example, you need to keep your weight under control. This way, you can prevent fat accumulation on your breasts.
Also, if your gynecomastia was caused by certain medication, you might want to stop using those medications if possible. Some steroids might also lead to breast enlargement. After your gynecomastia surgery, your results will be permanent if you consider all these factors. Doing sports and adopting a healthy lifestyle will also contribute to your operation results. This cosmetic surgery will change your life in a positive direction.