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Considering Gynecomastia Surgery

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Offline rawr

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Considering Gynecomastia Surgery
« on: July 01, 2008, 05:18:43 AM »
Hi, I've had Gynecomastia since I was 11. I've never been overweight until I was around 14. My breasts were becoming a real issue for me. So I lost a lot of weight since then to try and correct it. I am now 18, weigh around 80kg at 6'1". I have a solid build, I exercise regularly and do weights. I've never been happy with my chest and have rarely been to the beach or taken my shirt off in public.

My main concern was my puffy nipples. A year or so ago I was ignorant and heard that nipple piercing made the nipple hard all the time. So I did this, but it did nothing.

So now I'm saving up for surgery. I am under the assumption that on average it costs 5k to 6k.

I have a few questions. Dr. Sue in Melbourne has been brought up a lot, and she seems to be a cheaper surgeon (read around $4500 which is great). Is she worth visiting? I am in Sydney.

Can I make my chests look normal? (see pictures) as you can see, it's a milder case, and it's mainly my nipples. (picture makes it look better as it's a cold night, but on warm days they stick out and puff up, it's horrible.)

Also, what will the scars be like? I have heard they can be very subtle.

What things can go wrong? and what are the chances?

I will probably need to remove my piercing, correct?

I have Medicare and HCF, will I get rebates?

Any help would be VERY APPRECIATED.




Linkback: https://www.gynecomastia.org/smf/index.php?topic=14746.0

Re: Considering Gynecomastia Surgery
« Reply #1 on: July 01, 2008, 07:39:08 AM »
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Can I make my chests look normal? (see pictures) as you can see, it's a milder case, and it's mainly my nipples. (picture makes it look better as it's a cold night, but on warm days they stick out and puff up, it's horrible.)

Unfortunately chest fat is stubborn and its impossible to spot reduce fat exclusively from your chest by exercise.  The chest is usually one of the last places the male body will burn fat from. (and one of the first places to put it on).  Cardio will still help a little though so its worthwhile.

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Also, what will the scars be like? I have heard they can be very subtle.

If you choose a qualified, experienced and licensed plastic surgeon, chances are that the scars will be small & practically invisible over time (about a year).  This can't be guaranteed though, the way your body scars is totally unpredictable.  No surgeon will gaurantee that there will be no visible scarring.

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What things can go wrong?

A few things can go wrong:
As with any operation you can get infection, allergic reaction to anesthetic & drugs, post op you can have a haematoma (collection of blood under the skin), excessive scarring.  It is a tricky operation because the doctor has to take out enough gland to get rid of the puffyness, however if he takes out too much your nipples will cave in - the dreaded "crater defect/deformity" which is almost impossible to fix.  One of the more common complaints on these boards is "my doctor didn't take out enough gland and my nipples are still puffy".

Complete post-op recovery takes a long time, i.e. 6-12 months.  In that time you will most likely develop internal scar tissue which will make the nipples look slightly puffy again, however this will go away eventually. If it doesnt go away they can treat it with special injections.  Lipo-suction to the chest will make your chest quite sore for about 4-6 weeks and you'll have to wear some sort of compression binder/vest in that time to alleviate the swelling.

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and what are the chances?

You decrease the chances of problems occurring by following the instructions of your doctor and his staff.  If you keep your expectations of the operation results realistic and choose a doctor who is experienced in this procedure your odds of getting a good result are high and the odds of disasters occurring are low.

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I will probably need to remove my piercing, correct?

Not sure about this one?  Probably. I think it might complicate things during surgery having a piece of metal hanging there, and might even be considered an infection risk post op.

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I have Medicare and HCF, will I get rebates?

It is unlikely that you'll get anything from your private health fund for the gyne surgery cost because the gyne is not life threatening and poses no threat to your physical health. 
They will however pay for your hospital fees.  I believe you can also claim some of the operation back from medicare at tax time.

Surgery done 18th March 2008

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Offline rawr

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Re: Considering Gynecomastia Surgery
« Reply #2 on: July 02, 2008, 02:46:16 AM »
Thanks for the reply and the help.

Another question I have, is will the gyne come back?

What are the chances of the "cave-in" effect occurring... obviously you can't determine, but what percent of patients does this happen to?

Finally, big question. Is surgery worth it? (taking into consideration the risks) I want to have a normal chest, it will make me so much more happy about myself.

Thanks

Re: Considering Gynecomastia Surgery
« Reply #3 on: July 02, 2008, 05:00:53 AM »
The gland causing the puffyness does not grow back once removed, UNLESS you start using steroids or some other drug that makes it grow back.
As for chest fat, its likely that this will come back especially in old age.  Providing you keep a clean diet and do regular cardio i guess you can keep that under control.  But sooner or later you'll probably get lazy or have other commitments and as you get older your metabolism slows down so chances are your chest will get (somewhat) fat again.

The chances of the cave in happening is low.  I don't have any numbers to give you...i just read a post in the general discussion forum where a guy has it.  If you go to a surgeon who is experienced in this procedure it is unlikely it will happen to you.

Is it worth it? I'd still say yes.