Male GynecomastiaConveniently located to serve Chicago and North Shore

What is Male Breast Reduction Surgery?

Gynecomastia is a term used to describe the appearance of male breasts. This condition is not simply caused by weight gain as many men might assume. Rather, gynecomastia can develop in adolescence and continue to be a source of embarrassment for many years—even with a healthy diet and exercise regimen in place. Fortunately, male breast reduction surgery can help reduce the unwanted appearance of oversized male breasts. During the procedure, Dr. John D. Rachel can remove the excess fat and/or glandular tissue in the chest, often greatly improving self-confidence and the ability to enjoy sunny summer weather.

What are the Causes of Gynecomastia?

In most cases of gynecomastia, the exact cause is unknown. The condition can affect teenagers and adults alike, and may be exacerbated by:

  • Weight gain
  • Anabolic steroid use
  • Hormonal imbalance
  • Marijuana use
  • Medication side effects

Gynecomastia can also have psychological impacts such as embarrassment and lack of self-esteem in men, sometimes causing those affected to avoid intimate encounters and situations where they may need to be shirtless. The good news is that if gynecomastia is debilitating your quality of life, male breast reduction is a relatively common procedure with an impressive safety record. Gynecomastia treatment can help you feel more confident in—and comfortable with—your body.

What are Common Gynecomastia Symptoms?

An excess of breast tissue, producing the appearance of “breasts” on men, is a relatively common condition for those past the age of adolescence. Signs that you may potentially be affected by gynecomastia include:

  • Enlargement of the glandular tissue, which results in the appearance of male breasts
  • Distended nipples
  • Discoloration of the nipples and areolas
  • Sensitivity and discomfort in the chest area

Despite the large number of men who develop excess breast tissue, the condition can cause significant insecurity throughout the course of one’s daily life. For this reason, many gynecomastia patients seek out treatment to reduce their chest mass and minimize visibility of their breast tissue.

Who is a Candidate for Gynecomastia Treatment?

The majority of men with gynecomastia are good candidates for male breast reduction. You may consider the procedure to flatten your chest contours if you:

  • Are emotionally stable
  • Do not have significant medical problems
  • Are in overall good health
  • Do not smoke
  • Have firm, well-toned skin that can retract well
  • Are not using anabolic steroids or marijuana

If your gynecomastia is caused by an underlying medical condition, it is advised to treat the condition before undergoing breast reduction surgery. In addition, you may not be the best candidate for male breast reduction if your gynecomastia is a side effect of certain medications you’re taking.

How is the Male Breast Reduction Procedure Performed?

In some cases, liposuction alone is enough to significantly reduce the size of the breasts. With the liposuction technique, a small incision is created in the pectoral region and a small tube is used to remove the extra fat. In other cases, direct excision of fat and glandular tissue may be required. If direct excision is performed, a small incision will be made at the areolar border. This incision is very inconspicuous and generally heals very well, leaving a practically invisible scar.

In extreme cases, excess skin may need to be removed as well. During your consultation, the details of your male breast reduction surgery are reviewed so that you are well informed about the technique and what type of results and recovery you can expect.

Male Breast Surgery Recovery

Immediately after your surgery, a tight-fitting compression vest is placed over the chest area. This vest should be worn for two to three weeks following surgery to help with swelling and ensure consistent results. If an open procedure was required, drains may be placed as well. These drains are usually removed after three to five days.

You may experience some pain, but this pain is not usually severe and can be managed well through medications. You should also expect some swelling and bruising after surgery, the majority of which will dissipate in around two weeks. Most men can return to work within one week of gynecomastia surgery. However, you should avoid heavy exercise and other strenuous activities for at least three weeks. Results are typically seen at the three-month mark. However, it is important to lead a healthy lifestyle following your surgery in order to maintain your results as well as your overall health.

Your Male Gynecomastia will be performed in Dr. John D. Rachel's surgery center located in North Shore.

Dr Rachel is a true artist! Not only is he highly skilled at what he does, he is kind and caring with an awesome bedside manner! His office staff is second to none as well. I speak from experience as a patient at MetropolitanMDs. Being in the field, I have a lot of options and I wouldn’t go anywhere else. I refer all my patients for his services.

Male Breast Surgery FAQ

  • What kind of scars will I have?

    Gynecomastia results in minimal scarring, with most scars being hidden. If your male breast reduction is combined with a lift, you will have scars around your areola that are hidden in the pigment changes of your skin.

  • Are there any nonsurgical treatments for gynecomastia?

    Losing weight can help overweight men, though it doesn’t necessarily cure gynecomastia. But for men that are thin, surgery is an option for reducing gynecomastia.

  • If I am overweight can I have gynecomastia surgery?

    Many patients undergoing gynecomastia surgery are overweight. It is much healthier, and contour is better if a patient loses weight on their own. Surgery cannot make someone look as good as they would look with their own weight loss. But even with weight loss, often some excess chest fat remains, and surgery can be effective.

  • If I gain weight after having the procedure will my gynecomastia come back?

    If your problem was glandular, then gaining weight will not be a problem. If the problem was fat, then it is possible that some of it will return with additional weight gain.

  • Will I lose nipple sensation after the procedure?

    Injury is uncommon but may result in loss of the nipple areolar complex or loss of sensation.


Get your cosmetic surgery consultation with Dr. John D. Rachel, Quadruple Board-certified cosmetic surgeon.

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