Gynaecomastia, more commonly known as “Man Boobs”, is a hidden source of embarrassment for A LOT of men. Often revealed within the confines of bathroom mirrors, gynaecomastia can have a detrimental psychological effect on a man’s sense of masculinity, identity, and self confidence. This leads to a reluctance to uncover and go shirtless for fear of staring eyes and the frequently associated whispered judgemental remarks. Causal factors for this condition can range widely, but usually no cause can be found. The good news for those with this condition is that surgical treatment for gynaecomastia is highly effective and the results can be very satisfying, both aesthetically as well as psychologically.

The male breast (or chest) in gynaecomastia can be considered as composing of two excesses: breast tissue and fat. Some have more fat than breast, some the reverse and, in some, an equal proportion of both. Gynaecomastia treatment aims to take out and reduce the contents of the male breast whilst minimising scars. This is most often performed through a combination of liposuction (to remove fat) and surgical resection (to remove breast tissue), depending on what’s there. The incision is placed around the edge of the nipple and, with time, this scar fades away quite well. Of utmost importance in gynaecomastia surgery is the wearing of compression garments after the operation. Similar in appearance to exercise tights, compression garments provide an even distribution of pressure to the chest, pressing the skin onto the muscle in an even manner so as to prevent irregularities in contour and also to minimise post-surgical swelling. I usually recommend the wearing of garments for at least 6 weeks after surgery.

Lots of men are highly embarrassed about their “breasts”. Gynaecomastia imprisons men to hide, both physically and personally, and it limits their scope of possible activities. Treatment for gynaecomastia should not remain mythical. It makes sense. It restores.