Is male breast surgery the best procedure for someone with gynecomastia?

25 November 2022

Male chestBy plastic surgeon Dr Dirk Kremer

Whenever people hear breast reduction surgery mentioned most instantly thing of it as a procedure that only women undergo, but there is actually a male equivalent procedure that addresses the condition of gynecomastia.

Male breast reduction surgery can make a huge positive difference to both the physical appearance and mental wellbeing of any patient who has been suffering with enlarged breast tissue on the chest.

What is the condition of gynecomastia?

 Gynecomastia is a condition that effects boys and men by causing the male breast tissue to swell and become enlarged.

The condition is often caused by a hormone imbalance or hormone therapy, but there are several possible causes of gynecomastia, including:

  • The use of steroids
  • Lower than normal testosterone levels
  • Obesity
  • The use of certain medications, such as anti-anxiety medication or drugs that treat heartburn
  • An increased level of estrogen

What male breast surgery options are available?

To address the physical effects of gynecomastia, male patients have a couple of different options to consider and discuss with a cosmetic surgeon.

Male breast reduction surgery works a little differently to female breast reduction surgery, but most patients will have one of two main options, which are liposuction or male breast tissue removal. To determine which procedure would best suit you, your lifestyle and your gynecomastia condition, you should speak in-depth with your surgeon.

Liposuction for male breast reduction

If the male breast tissue enlargement is mostly caused by excess fatty tissue, as is the case for many males who suffer with obesity, liposuction may be the most sensible option. This is because liposuction will specifically target that excess fat, instantly reducing the appearance of male breasts.

Male breast tissue removal

If the enlarged male breast tissue is glandular tissue rather than fatty tissue, your surgeon may decide that it would be best to just remove all excess tissue underneath the nipple to achieve a more refined and smaller chest for the patient.

Read: Gynecomastia - male breast reduction, acne scars and six-packs

Can anyone with gynecomastia get male breast reduction surgery?

As with any surgical procedure, a patient should meet a few requirements before being a suitable candidate for male breast reduction surgery, regardless of how much they are suffering with the gynecomastia condition.

Some of the requirements your cosmetic surgeon will like want you to meet before undergoing male breast reduction surgery includes:

  • Being in general good health
  • Having skin that is firm, elastic and able to shrink back afterwards
  • Not suffering with any other diseases, such as impaired liver function

Your surgeon will want to review your previous medical history, discuss any medications you may be taking, and go over other relevant information before deciding whether you are suitable and ready to undergo a male breast reduction procedure.

Are they any risks with male breast reduction surgery?

I often highlight that all surgeries come with some element of risk. Male breast reduction surgery procedures are no different, though you should first understand that the best way to mitigate these risks is by choosing a reputable board-certified cosmetic surgeon with experience in male breast reduction surgery to carry out your procedure.

With that said, some degree of risk will always exist, no matter how minimal, and in the case of male breast reduction surgery these risks may include:

  • Results with uneven breast tissue
  • Blood clots
  • Damage to the underlying musculature and nerves
  • Build-up of fluid
  • Fat necrosis
  • Infection

Read: How to prepare for your male breast reduction surgery

How long does it take to recover from male breast reduction surgery?

Following male breast reduction surgery, most patients can expect to be somewhat back to normal with a return to work within one to two weeks. For more strenuous activities, such as getting back to the gym, patients are recommended to wait at least six weeks so their body has time to fully recover.

During early parts of the recovery process, your surgeon will ask you to wear a compression garment to aid with healing. Bruising and swelling around the area the procedure took place is perfectly normal and to be expected.

Be aware that it may take up to 6 months before the full effects of the procedure are fully realised and noticeable.

Are you someone who suffers with gynecomastia and have been considering the surgical options available to you? If so, don’t hesitate to book in your initial consultation with me here at Harley Street Aesthetics so that we can discuss your condition in full confidentiality and find a suitable way forward. To book your consultation, simply call 0845 519 7232, e-mail or complete our simple online contact form.


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