How to get rid of man boobs with surgery
When non-surgical methods have failed to correct the physical appearance of “man boobs” or the look of female breasts in men, gynecomastia surgery can often be the next best option for patients eager to resume a normal life. For many men, both young and old, the condition is often more than just “skin deep.” It’s often psychological, too. The condition leaves some men feeling like they are prisoners of their own bodies. Studies have shown that gynecomastia can lead to emotional discomfort as well as significantly impact a man’s self-confidence. Excess breast tissue can also cause a man’s breasts to sag and stretch the areola, the dark skin surrounding the nipple.
How surgery can help
Gynecomastia surgery can provide many patients with a new outlook on life. The procedure meticulously corrects overdeveloped or enlarged breasts in men. For patients who opt to have surgery, the success rates are generally high and the complications few. In Dr Bernard Beldholm’s experience, patients who receive gynecomastia surgery report a number of benefits. Some of these benefits include a more masculine chest, more pronounced muscles, and less sagging skin. Another big benefit is an improvement in posture. It’s not uncommon for patients with gynecomastia to generally slouch in order to conceal their chest.
Anaesthesia during surgery
At our private hospital, gynecomastia surgery is done under a general anaesthetic and carefully monitored by Dr Beldholm and his team. A general anaesthetic is usually necessary for more extensive surgeries. It provides comfort to the patient while under the knife by preventing them from feeling pain. The good news is that general anesthesia is very safe thanks to advances in both technology and medication. Some side effects, however, may include temporary confusion, nausea, vomiting as well as bruising or soreness from the IV drip.
The location of the procedure
The surgery can be easily performed at one of Dr Beldholm’s private hospital in either Maitland or Hunter Valley. The bulk of his procedures are performed at either one of these locations. Both private hospitals are equipped with our state-of-the-art operating room. Patients can easily choose which location is most convenient for them.
Preparing for surgery
The success and safety of a patient’s gynecomastia procedure depends a great deal on their complete honesty during the one-on-one consultation with Dr Beldholm. Patients will be asked a number of questions about their health, expectations and lifestyle. If it is suspected that an underlying health condition is contributing to a patient’s gynecomastia, they’ll likely be referred to a general practitioner before a surgery date is ever scheduled. It’s important to identify the root of the problem in order to make sure your surgery is ultimately a success. Once a surgery date has been planned, it’s critical that the patient:
- Stop smoking (if you do)
- Check with your surgeon about your current medications
- Avoid taking aspirin or other anti-inflammatory drugs. They can increase bleeding.
- Be as fit as possible to help the recovery process
- Reach your optimal weight
Long before the first incision is ever made, Dr Beldholm will provide patients with detailed preoperative instructions. It’s vital that patients follow them carefully in order to ensure a successful recovery. While prepping for the surgery, patients may also want to consider putting together a “recovery area” in their home. This may include pillows, ice packs, a thermometer and a telephone within easy reach. Make sure a relative or friend is also available to drive you to and from the hospital or clinic. It’s also highly advised that patients have someone to stay with them for at least 24 hours after they return home.
The Procedure: What happens?
Modern gynecomastia techniques include liposuction to sculpt and refine, and to avoid a depression where the gland was previously located. In order to create a better cosmetic result, Dr Beldholm incorporates VASER high definition liposculpture into the gynecomastia surgeries he performs. This technique removes unwanted fat from the breast area while tightening loose skin due to the ultrasound energy that stimulates the production of collagen in the skin. For patients who desire a more athletic look, it can also help create a 6-pack as well as a sculpted chest area.
When glandular breast tissue or excess skin must be removed to correct gynecomastia, Dr Beldholm will also make an incision into the patient’s skin. This is done by making a small incision around the bottom of the patient’s areola. Sometimes incision patterns may vary depending on the specific conditions of the patient and Dr Beldholm’s surgical preference.
The potential risks
All surgeries, unfortunately, come with potential risks. The good news is that most patients who qualify for gynecomastia surgery tend to do well. After they’ve healed, the majority go on to live normal, fulfilling lives. However, while rare, these are some of the risks and complications that all patients should be aware of, according to the Australian Society of Plastic Surgeons:
- A blood clot in the deep veins of the legs (deep vein thrombosis), which can move to the lungs (pulmonary embolus) or to the brain and may be life threatening
- Risks of anaesthesia including allergic reaction or potentially fatal cardiovascular complications such as heart attack
- Temporary numbness or loss of breast sensation
- Keloids and hypertrophic scars that are raised, red and thickened scars.
- Slightly mismatched breasts or nipples
- Allergic reaction to suture materials, tape adhesive or other medical materials and lotions
What to expect after surgery
After surgery, it is completely normal for patients to experience pain, bruising, swelling and numbness around the operated site. This will typically subside overtime. In the meantime, Dr Beldholm will generally provide his patients with medication to cope with the pain. In most cases, patients will be allowed to go home the same day, however, Dr Beldholm and his staff will regularly check up on them. At any point patients have concerns or problems, we want them to let us know as soon as possible so that we can address it right away!
While it’s not exactly a fashion statement, patients will be required to wear a compression garment to provide support for their chest area. A plastic tube may be inserted into each breast to drain excess fluid. Other dressings may be changed or removed at this time.
Depending on the extent of the patient’s procedure, they may need to take a few days off work to rest. It’s also a good idea for patients to avoid heavy lifting, vigorous exercise, swimming and strenuous sports until Dr Beldholm gives them the “green light” to do so. The good news is that most patients are able to return to work and some of their regular activities in about seven days or so.
Life after surgery
Following gynecomastia surgery, most patients will notice the results almost immediately. The shape and appearance of their chest will also be noticeably better. Of course, as the patient’s body heals, the results will continue to improve. Overtime, scars will continue to fade and hardly be noticeable–if at all.
Please be aware, though. In order to maintain the results from the surgery, it is so important that patients maintain a healthy weight, avoid steroid use, monitor any underlying condition that may have contributed to the patient’s feminine-like breasts, and avoid drugs that could influence testosterone levels. Failing to do could result in a patient having gynecomastia all over again.
Do you need our help?
When choosing a surgeon, it’s important to go with a practice that specialises in gynaecomastia surgery. Dr Bernard Beldholm has performed hundreds of gynecomastia surgeries on men who are eager to regain their self-confidence. He and his friendly staff are dedicated to helping patients reach their cosmetic goals. Contact us today to find out we can help you. If you have any questions or would like to book an appointment, call us at (02) 4934 5700. You can also email us by clicking here.