The chest area is a key issue not only for women: also to men it is important that this part of the body is well-shaped and meets their expectations. After all, a flat and muscular man’s chest is a symbol of strength, vitality and masculinity. This explains why men affected by gynaecomastia – enlarged breast tissue in men – usually see themselves as too female. In particular, swimming pool or beach visits increase the patients’ burden. It is thus not surprising that enlarged and swollen man breasts can be challenging in the closer social environment or in a partnership. Aesthetic and plastic surgery has many ways to help affected men.
During adolescence, it is not unusual that also the breast of adolescent men is swollen temporarily due to hormonal fluctuations. In general, the breast returns to its normal size after a certain time. Sometimes, however, permanent swelling remains, which may also well occur in older patients. This is often caused by an increase in the mammary glands and the fatty tissue or a combination of both. The swelling may be only on one side but it can also occur in both breasts. In any case, a possible underlying disease must be ruled out prior to treatment.
The procedure of gynaecomastia
If the growth is an enlargement of breast tissue, it is called a true gynaecomastia. In this case, the excess tissue can only be removed by surgery. The procedure is performed under general anaesthesia and takes about 1 to 1.5 hours. If there is only an increase in fatty tissue, liposuction is sufficient for treatment. Usually, however, it is a combination of both causes.
After the surgery, the breast is swollen and often bruised. A light pressure bandage is applied first. Afterwards, it is useful to wear an elastic bandage or a compression vest to ensure fast healing and avoid swelling. Sports (depending on the type of procedure and the kind of sport) will be possible again after three to four weeks at the earliest. However, in the first six months after the surgery, the chest should not be exposed to UV radiation in order not to jeopardise the complete healing of the scar.
The cost of treatment may possibly be covered by your health insurance upon consultation. Many health insurance companies ask you to provide evidence of medical necessity beforehand, so it is advisable to clarify the details with your health insurance well in advance.
|Type of intervention||General anaesthesia, outpatient|
|Duration of the procedure||30 to 90 minutes|
|Recovery time||10 to 14 days|