Men are turning to surgery for reduction of overly large ‘breasts’ in almost equal numbers to women as the latest numbers from the US show. The American Society for Plastic Surgeons recently released their 2015 figures and male breast reduction surgery now accounts for 40 per cent of all breast reduction procedures performed last year.
What does male breast reduction surgery entail?
Gynaecomastia is a relatively common condition affecting men; the male chest area becomes enlarged, giving the appearance of often pronounced breasts. Gynaecomastia can be divided into two types; the first is often seen as true gynaecomastia and is the result of a swelling of the small amount of firm, glandular breast tissue that all men have. This is usually due to a hormonal imbalance and is often seen during puberty or later on in life. It can also be caused by a reaction to certain medications.
‘False’ or ‘psuedo’ gynaecomastia is the accumulation of fatty tissue in the chest area or an excess of the skin, often the result of extreme weight loss where the tissues have stretched and will not snap back, despite diet and exercise.
Whatever the cause, this condition, often described in insulting terms such as ‘man boobs’ or ‘moobs’, can result in great emotional distress. This can affect the sufferer’s self-esteem and ability to wear certain clothes, perform everyday activities, or even maintain close physical relationships, so breast reduction surgery can be a highly effective solution.
If the problem is due to an excess of fatty tissue and the skin had good elasticity, then liposuction alone can usually produce a very pleasing result. Small incisions are made and the liposuction cannula is inserted, gently breaking up and removing fat cells and reshaping the chest area. An increase in glandular tissue may need to be removed in a similar procedure to female breast reduction surgery. Incisions are typically made in the nipple area and the glandular tissue and any excess skin is excised. This procedure can be combined with liposuction if necessary. If the excess is very great, more extensive incisions (and consequently greater scarring) may be needed.
In the US last year, men underwent 27,500 of the reported total of 68,106 breast reduction procedures, a five per cent rise on the previous year. In the UK, we saw an even more marked rise with male breast reduction surgery up by 13 per cent, according to the British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (BAAPS), the leading independent plastic surgery association of which I am a member.
For more information on gynaecomastia surgery call 01926 436341 to book a consultation at my Leamington Cosmetic Surgery Clinic.