Gynecomastia
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Gynecomastia

Gynecomastia is a common condition that is characterized by the over-development of breast tissue in males.

Description

Enlargement can effect one or both breasts. This condition occurs during puberty and also in older men and is associated with weight gain.

Men, like women, have glandular breast tissue, but they remain underdeveloped due to blocking by male hormones. Gynecomastia is characterized by excess fat or glandular tissue or both, and can develop when there is an imbalance in these hormones. Other reasons for the abnormal growth of breast include birth defects, obesity, certain diseases like liver failure and cancer, excess alcohol, certain drugs like anabolic steroids, or sagging skin due to sudden weight loss.

Breast enlargement can be an emotional burden and can impair the self-confidence in men.

Surgical treatment for gynecomastia seeks to remove this breast tissue, recontour the chest wall, minimise scarring and in some cases remove loose skin on the chest wall.


Procedure

The surgery takes two hours and is performed under intravenous sedation or general anaesthesia. It is a day surgery procedure. Prior to the procedure, your surgeon will mark the region to be treated. Surgery can involve liposuction and/or excision of breast tissue and fat depending on the presence of excess fat or glandular tissue. Access to the breast tissue is via a peri-areolar incision (around the coloured area around the nipple). A combination of excision of breast tissue and chest wall liposuction using a cannula and negative pressure suction is then used to recontour the chest.

You will be required to wear a compression vest for 6 weeks following the procedure.


Downtime

Two weeks off manual work, light duties 3-6 weeks and back to normal activities by 6 weeks.


Funding access

Yes (seek confirmation from your private health fund)


FAQ

What are the risks and side effects of gynecomastia surgery?

As with any surgery, reduction mammoplasty involves risks and potential complications. These include:

  • Temporary or permanent change in nipple or breast sensation
  • Scars
  • Pain, infection, bleeding
  • Loose skin, uneven breast contour, irregular pigmentation, fluid collections (seroma)
  • Damage to underlying structures e.g. nerves/muscles

Please add your own questions and bring them to the consultation

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