Added April 30, 2005
When my son was 10 I began to notice that he was getting a little big in the breast area. It wasn't really disconcerting because he was a little chubby, and I thought this was just a part of being heavy. I just put it out of my mind thinking that when he got in 6th grade in Jr. High School he'd lose the weight as soon as he got in a regulated gym class. Unfortunately when he dropped the weight, the chest didn't seem to go down. It really didn't bother him because he was young and didn't think about those kinds of things. He was still interested in boyhood projects, and the body didn't really matter much. I knew that it would be a major issue in the future, but thought that maybe when he got into High School and started working out with weights he would lose it. It was then that we found out what male gynecomastia was. And it started out as a horror story that ended better than we ever thought it would.
We took our son to a specialist in Nashville, Tennessee for another unrelated matter in 2002 when he was a Sophomore in Central High School. While there my son brought up that while he was working out, and playing football, he had lost quite a bit of weight but was unable to lose the fat in his breast area. It was getting quite embarrassing because they were just getting larger every year! The kind hearted specialist told us that our son had male gynecomastia and that he would have to have surgery to take care of the "problem".
It really wasn't a "problem" until the year before...his Freshman year, when the girls began to notice them, and as kids always do they made cruel remarks that it wouldn't be cool to have a boyfriend with bigger breasts than they had! My son was crushed! He decided that if he gained weight it would look more natural, and if he slumped his shoulders and wore big shirts you wouldn't be able to see them as much. When he went swimming he always wore shirts so that they wouldn't be as noticeable, and when he would get out of the water he'd automatically wrap himself in a towel hoping that no one had noticed them.
So when the Specialist had told us that he needed surgery we started inquiring about what kind of procedure would be needed. My son was between a B and C cup, so they were quite big. Added to the fact that he had gained weight in hopes of hiding them only added to the problem making them even bigger. We sought out even more surgeons in Nashville only to find out that the procedure offered there would be akin to a full mastectomy. They would take off the whole breast and nipple area and the scars would he horrific! This was not what I wanted for my son! No matter what I told the doctors it was always the same thing. Their opinion was that it was better to appear flat chested in a shirt than have breasts! In my opinion it was better to be able to go without a shirt and appear normal rather than have a chest full of scars and no nipples! For a young man that would be devastated. One doctor even told me that he could say he was in an accident or that he had at one time had breast cancer! What a thing to tell someone!!! I was outraged. Then when my son was a Senior in high school he decided it was time to have surgery. We had to find someone that could do this without disfiguring him!
We thought all was lost. Surely there had to be SOMEONE that could do plastic surgery without disfiguring him for life! And one night we were all watching one of our favorite television shows- Plastic Surgery- Before and After and the previews talked about a doctor that had perfected Male Gynecomastia surgery and they would be showing an actual surgery by this doctor. Needless to say we were all glued to the television that night! The next day I contacted that doctor- Dr. Elliot Jacobs from New York. He had explained the same procedure that to me that was on the television the night before, and told me there was no reason that my son couldn't look like a normal young man when finished. Since I live in Tennessee and couldn't afford to go back and forth to New York before the surgery Dr. Jacobs was kind enough to let me send him photographs of my son from various angles and we went from there. The consult visit was made a day before surgery where Dr. Jacobs explained everything again in detail, making sure we were both comfortable with the procedure. He showed us pictures of before and after's so we would know what to expect my son to look like.
On the day of surgery things went very smoothly. My son was out of surgery in two hours and Dr. Jacobs told me that it went very well. They allowed me to go back to see him within 30 minutes after surgery and to my amazement he was flat as a board and the skin had already started adhering back to his muscle tissue! He had absolutely no pain, swelling was very minimal, and he never did have any bruising. There looked to be some slight yellowing color at the top and bottom where the binding wrap was located, but nothing other than that. There will be no scars as Dr. Jacobs took the breast tissue out from a small cut at the bottom of his areola, and two small cuts at the sides of his breasts where lyposuction was done to remove excess fat, which by the way have disappeared totally after only 5 weeks.
We are so happy with this surgery that was done. As said before, there is no scarring, no excess skin as it is all reattached and healthy looking, the nipples shrunk to a normal size and my son is the happiest he has ever been in his life! I can't keep a shirt on him now. He has lost 15 pounds and as he nears his 6 weeks healing time he can start working out again with weights to lose the rest of the weight. He has taken all his dress shirts in to get them tailored to fit instead of having them big to hide his chest. He wants the whole world to see him now!
I have to tell you that this is a big shout out for Dr. Elliot Jacobs! He has changed my son's life and his outlook on life. He has so much confidence now, and believe it or not.....has a lot of girls calling him wanting to go to the Prom with him. His best friend (who happens to be a girl and is the only one that actually knows about the surgery) told us that he is so much more confident now! More outgoing- and people are just drawn to him now more than ever! So I have to thank Dr. Jacobs in a way that will be of benefit to him. If you have any doubts about what any doctor tells you or you just want someone competant and very good at what he does with this type of surgery, please call him and talk to him. Believe me.... he will put you at ease about everything. Go to his website at http://www.plasticsurgeonnewyork.com/ where you will be able to see some before and after pictures. I will be sending some of my son's pictures in another week at the 6 week mark for his site! This is one awesome doctor!!! He understands the feelings of these young boys and men which is more than I can say for the specialists in Nashville who just seemed ready to make an appointment for surgery or move on to the next patient. They had NO TIME for someone else's feelings on what was happening! It was their way or the highway as far as they were concerned! Dr. Jacobs makes you feel welcome from the time you contact him, throught out the surgical procedure, all the way through the post care. He is still in contact with me now to see how my son is coming along.
Please send him a note or give him a call. You will be happy you did! A very happy mother is telling you that for your own peace of mind- give Dr. Elliot Jacobs a call, you'll be thanking me for the rest of your life, or someone you care about's life! Beverly (Mother of one happy 18 year old young man!)