If you’re a man with gynecomastia (aka male breasts) and the idea of going to the beach without wearing a shirt or tank top to cover your chest makes you anxious, there’s good news. Gynecomastia surgery is an effective solution for men who suffer from enlarged breast tissue. Board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Goretti Ho Taghva of LEA Plastic Surgery performs male breast reduction surgery in Newport Beach to help men in Orange County, Southern California, and beyond to feel more confident in their everyday lives.
What is Gynecomastia?
Gynecomastia is a condition that occurs in boys and men and describes the excessive development of the breast tissue. Typically, the issue is caused by a hormone imbalance between estrogen and testosterone levels. While it most often affects both breasts, it can occasionally affect just one.
Breasts in men is not a serious medical problem, however, having a sagging or enlarged chest as a man can cause emotional distress and be difficult to live with.
Men are typically embarrassed by gynecomastia and often seek male breast reduction in Newport Beach to have excess breast tissue removed.
Symptoms of gynecomastia include swollen breast tissue and tenderness in the chest area. The condition is triggered by a lower amount of testosterone than estrogen. Factors which are related to male breast growth include:
- Hormone changes in infancy and during puberty (this is normal and often goes away on its own)
- Medications such as anti-androgens, anabolic steroids, anti-anxiety medication, antibiotics, and more
- Drugs and alcohol
- Health issues such as hypogonadism, tumors, hyperthyroidism, kidney failure, and cirrhosis
Individuals at the highest risk for gynecomastia include adolescents, men between 50-80, and those which use anabolic steroids for athletic performance, as well as people with health conditions such as kidney disease, thyroid disease, cirrhosis, and active tumors.
Conditions that cause similar symptoms to gynecomastia include fatty breast tissue (pseudo-gynecomastia), breast cancer, and mastitis.
About Gynecomastia Treatment in Newport Beach, CA
Male breasts sometimes go away on their own over time, but surgical treatment is often recommended for gynecomastia patients in Newport Beach and Orange County who want to achieve a flat, masculine chest.
Surgery often involves liposuction and/or excision of glandular breast tissue. Liposuction is used when the breast tissue is mostly excess fat, but not breast gland tissue. Dr. Goretti Ho Taghva most often performs male breast reduction surgery endoscopically. This method uses small incisions and is less invasive with a shorter recovery period than traditional mastectomy.
Am I a Good Candidate for Male Breast Reduction?
Gynecomastia can happen to any man regardless of size or weight. Men with excessive breast tissue may be good candidates for male breast reduction. People in Newport Beach or Orange County looking for gynecomastia treatment should be in good health, at a stable weight, at least 16 years of age, and have realistic expectations for what surgery can accomplish.
The Consultation for Male Breast Reduction
Men interested in male breast reduction surgery should schedule a consultation with a reputable and board-certified plastic surgeon to discuss their goals and treatment options.
If you want to find out if this surgery is right for you, Dr. Goretti Ho Taghva can help you through this process. The first step is to schedule a gynecomastia consultation at her Newport Beach office. Patients come to Dr. Ho Taghva from all over the country, and even internationally.
During this initial meeting, be prepared to discuss your goals for surgery, any current medical conditions, medications, and previous surgeries. Dr. Ho Taghva will evaluate any risk factors and may request diagnostic testing to determine the cause of the gynecomastia if needed.
She will examine your chest, take photographs, and discuss your options for surgery. The surgeon will explain any risks involved with gynecomastia correction in Orange County and go over the type of anesthesia to be used.
Patients are always encouraged to speak up and share feelings, thoughts, doubts, and fears about surgery. Dr. Ho Taghva is known for her ability to relate to her patients and this relationship is key to a successful outcome.
Preparing for Gynecomastia Surgery in Orange County
In preparation for male breast reduction in Newport Beach, Dr. Goretti Ho Taghva may recommend that you get lab testing done and be evaluated by your primary care doctor or an endocrinologist. Certain medications may need to be adjusted or ceased altogether before surgery.
Stop smoking well in advance of the surgery as continuing to use nicotine products can impair the healing process. You should also avoid any anti-inflammatories since these medications can increase bleeding.
Before the procedure, make sure to arrange for someone to drive you to and from your surgical appointment. Even though male breast reduction is performed on an outpatient basis, some patients prefer to have someone stay with them overnight.
The Male Breast Reduction Procedure
Dr. Goretti Ho Taghva performs gynecomastia surgery in Newport Beach at GALEA Center for Advanced Surgery, a Medicare Accredited surgery center (the highest level of accreditation for outpatient ambulatory surgery centers). GALEA is located next door to the LEA Plastic Surgery office.
The procedure is performed on an outpatient basis under local anesthesia or general anesthesia. The surgeon will determine before the procedure whether liposuction or excision is needed. Often, both are used to remove excess fatty tissue and glandular breast tissue.
When liposuction is necessary, the surgeon inserts a cannula (hollow suction tube) through several small incisions. This tool is moved back and forth to loosen the excess fat before it is suctioned out.
Excision is another technique that is used when there is glandular tissue or excess skin to be removed. This procedure requires a larger incision, and the placement depends on the patient’s preferences and the specific condition of the breast tissue. Individuals that have undergone significant weight loss may need to have excess skin removed.
Combining liposuction and excision is very common. In these cases, liposuction will be used to remove the fat first and excision will follow to reduce the size of the glandular tissue. For the latter, a small incision will be made, often either around the areola or under the breast.
Recovery from Gynecomastia Surgery
Before surgery, Dr. Ho Taghva will go over the medications to be taken post-operatively, if and when stitches will be removed, and when you can resume normal activities. You will also schedule your follow-up appointment. Following the surgeon’s instructions closely will help ensure the most successful outcome.
Immediately after surgery, a dressing and bandage will be applied to the incisions and a support garment should be worn to keep swelling down and to support the new chest contours.
Dr. Ho Taghva may place a thin tube under the skin to drain excess fluid and blood. She will provide specific instructions for aftercare, drains, and medications.
Depending on the details of the surgery, the recovery period will vary. Typically, recovery time for this type of surgery is anywhere from 4 to 6 weeks. However, patients can usually return to work about two to three days following the procedure. This downtime is needed to aid in the healing process.
Mild exercise can be resumed about one week after surgery, and full activity in the lower body after about two weeks. Upper body or chest area workouts may be resumed after about four weeks. A compression garment should be worn for approximately 2-4 weeks.
Frequently Asked Questions About Gynecomastia Surgery
When performed by a board-certified cosmetic surgeon, gynecomastia surgery is generally very safe. However, all surgeries involve risks such as bleeding, infection, and anesthesia complications.
Sometimes, surgery can leave visible scars or pigment changes. Slightly uneven nipples or breasts are a possible side effect, and in these cases, a second male breast reduction procedure may be required. However, choosing a reputable and board-certified plastic surgeon in Newport Beach to perform male breast reduction surgery can greatly reduce the chances of developing these unwanted side effects.
Gynecomastia, or enlarged male breasts, is caused by several factors. The main reason breasts develop in males is due to hormonal imbalances of estrogen and testosterone. Excess estrogen can make breast tissue grow, whereas testosterone stops the growth. If this delicate balance is thrown off, male breasts can develop.
Yes, however recurrence of glandular breast tissue is rare. Fatty tissue returning after male breast reduction is possible if the individual gains a significant amount of weight. In this case, another course of liposuction in the future may be needed.
Selecting the right surgeon in Newport Beach for gynecomastia surgery is crucial to ensure you achieve the best results possible. It is important to choose a surgeon who is board-certified and has a strong reputation for completing this type of procedure with a high success rate. Do the research, look and before and after photos, and check the qualifications of the Orange County plastic surgeons you are considering.
Dr. Goretti Ho Taghva is a highly regarded board-certified plastic surgeon known for her modern and compassionate approach to cosmetic surgery. She performs her procedures at the state of the art GALEA Center for Advanced Surgery, a Medicare Accredited surgery center in Newport Beach. To request a gynecomastia surgery consultation in Orange County with Dr. Goretti Ho Taghva, call our office at 949.945.2168.