Are you tired of living with excess male breast tissue, or “man boobs” and are researching if male breast reduction surgery is right for you? If so, it is vital that you do the necessary research regarding this procedure, as well as what to expect afterward such as scarring.
Gynecomastia is a condition that results in male breast enlargement. The main cause is hormonal changes or imbalances between the hormones testosterone and estrogen, though it can also be caused by the use of certain medications, drugs, or anabolic steroids.
Common symptoms may include swollen breast tissue, nipple sensitivity, breast pain, enlarged breasts, puffy nipples, and nipple discharge. However, for some, the only sign of gynecomastia is enlarged male breast tissue.
Individuals living with gynecomastia in one or both breasts often experience feelings of low-self esteem or embarrassment and therefore seek out treatment options. Gynecomastia surgery is a cosmetic procedure that can correct gynecomastia for long-term outcomes. However, there are some things to consider regarding surgery, including the risk of scarring and how to treat gynecomastia surgery scars. Read on to learn more.
What Causes Scarring?
Scars form on the skin as the body is healing from an injury (or from an incision created during surgery). For a scar to form, a wound must be deep enough to injure the inner layers of the skin or the dermis. Cells will quickly create collagen to repair the wound, which results in tissue that is thicker and less flexible than the surrounding skin (the scar).
Overall, there is an array of factors that ultimately determine the extent of scarring after gynecomastia surgery. This includes the surgical technique used, the patient’s genetic makeup, and how well aftercare instructions are followed.
Because gynecomastia surgery involves the creation of incisions, there is a risk of scarring. The incision for gynecomastia surgery is made in the breast tissue partially around the areola. As it heals it usually is well hidden due to the change in skin texture and color. However, for some, a thick scar known as a keloid or hypertrophic scar may form leaving the patient with a new problem that may make him still feel uncomfortable going shirtless. The more excess skin that needs to be excised during surgery, the higher the risk of additional scarring.
This may also come down to genetics, as some men produce more collagen than others during the healing process. It is the excess collagen that makes a raised and noticeable scar.
Choosing an experienced board-certified gynecomastia surgeon is your best bet in getting optimal surgical results including the healing of your incisions.
Scar Solutions Following Gynecomastia Surgery
Following your surgeon’s aftercare instructions plays a large part in reducing scarring. The visibility of scarring can be exacerbated when incisions are not cared for properly after surgery.
Dr. Miguel Delgado, M.D. stresses to his patients the importance of following all preoperative and postoperative instructions in order for them to get the best results. When it comes to the care of the incisions, he warns patients to avoid direct sunlight for 6 months to a year and to wear protective clothing or broad-spectrum sunscreen to prevent the development of hypertrophic scars. Prioritizing proper hygiene after surgery is also paramount.
After the healing of the incisions, silicone sheets are used to control the formation of keloids. Silicone sheets or scar gels are effective as silicone hydrates the scar tissue and reduces the production of collagen fibers. Using dermatology-grade skin care products sold at a plastic surgery or dermatology office can also be useful for keeping the skin healthy and strong.
Schedule a Consultation in San Francisco
Gynecomastia surgery is not deemed medically necessary nor is the removal of the resulting scars, but many men suffer severe psychological distress making solutions essential. If you are interested in learning more about gynecomastia surgery in the San Francisco Bay Area, contact Dr. Delgado today.
As one of the premier gynecomastia plastic surgeons in the San Francisco and Novato areas, you can trust Dr. Delgado to provide the professional and natural-looking results you desire. He takes the time to create a treatment plan for each individual patient to help achieve the desired chest appearance.
Gynecomastia Scar FAQs
Does gynecomastia surgery involve large incisions?
The incisions created during gynecomastia surgery are not particularly large, though the length of the scar depends on the grade or severity of the gynecomastia.
Do most patients with gynecomastia find surgery to be the best treatment?
Individuals with true gynecomastia (gynecomastia caused by glandular tissue in the breasts) find that gynecomastia surgery is an effective and long-lasting solution.
Will all gynecomastia surgery patients experience scars?
Because gynecomastia surgery involves the creation of incisions, all patients will experience scars. However, the degree of scarring will vary depending on genetics and how well an individual follows aftercare directions.
What does good hygiene look like after gynecomastia surgery?
While Dr. Delgado will provide you with specific aftercare instructions it is important to properly clean your incisions with proper hygiene. This may include washing the wounds with antimicrobial soap to keep them clean of sweat and bacteria.
Can male breast cancer impact my gynecomastia surgery results?
It is not advised that those with breast cancer undergo male breast reduction surgery.