Summary: Not many people know what gynecomastia even means. It’s not the name of a procedure, but the name of a condition: the development of breasts in men. This male breast tissue can be deeply uncomfortable for many patients. The best way to treat gynecomastia will depend on your individual health, your desired final outcome, and the kind of timeline you’re on. Luckily, no matter what those variables are, there is likely going to be a gynecomastia treatment for you, so you can enjoy a more masculine profile and increased confidence.
What is the Best Way to Treat Gynecomastia?
Men can develop breast tissue. In fact, it’s quite natural for this breast tissue to develop (it might not be considered “attractive, but it certainly happens through natural mechanisms). That said, not all men are particularly comfortable with male breast tissue.
Much of that has to do with our popular and social constructions of gender. Breasts are generally considered to be feminine articles of anatomy, so a man that develops breast tissue is therefore considered to be less masculine (again, this is in large part due to the dichotomous way we think about gender: if you are feminine you cannot be masculine, and so on).
But we it is within these social contexts that we must examine the condition that is gynecomastia—male breast tissue. In most cases, this tissue is not wanted. As a result, several treatments for gynecomastia have been developed that can help give patients a more masculine profile.
Using Liposuction to Treat Gynecomastia
The most common way to treat male breast tissue is through the use of liposuction. Of course, this is only the case in which the male breast tissue is composed primarily of fat. When male breast tissue is mostly muscle or skin, a different approach must be taken.
During a liposuction procedure, the surgeon will make a tiny incision in the targeted area. Then, a small tube (called a cannula) will be inserted. This tube is able to remove the desired areas of fat from the body. This is, essentially, how any liposuction procedure is performed.
Once the desired fat areas are removed, the small incision is closed. According to the website of the Minneapolis gynecomastia experts at Minneapolis Plastic Surgery, recovery from this procedure can take several weeks. However, the end result is a profile that is more in keeping with traditional masculine ideas.
Benefits of Liposuction for Gynecomastia
The benefits of using liposuction for this procedure include the following:
- The ability to achieve a more masculine profile and body shape
- The ability to remove areas of fat that seemed immune to diet and exercise
- The ability to remove larger amounts of fat
- An increase in confidence and self-esteem
- The ability to remove one’s shirt without embarrassment
- Liposuction gives surgeons a great deal of control over contouring, meaning that the end results can be “sculpted” to look natural
Of course, liposuction for gynecomastia isn’t for everyone. Some patients’ breast tissue will simply not be the right composition for liposuction.
Coolsculpting for Gynecomastia
CoolSculpting is often touted as a kind of non surgical alternative to liposuction. And it is. CoolSculpting basically works because fat cells have a much lower tolerance for cold than skin cells. The device works to “freeze” fat cells without damaging the skin. There’s some suction, some cold, some numbness (on the part of the patient), but little discomfort and no incisions.
That makes it a good choice to treat gynecomastia. The only downside is that CoolSculpting is not quite as powerful as something like liposuction. Results will take several weeks to appear and when they do they will be much more subtle than you would get with liposuction.
Now, in your particular case that might be a good thing. That might be what you’re after. Patients who suffer only from a very mild case of gynecomastia, for example, might be more compelled to seek out CoolSculpting. And, of course, there’s the benefit of time: CoolSculpting generally does little to impact your daily routine and most patients can be in and out in under an hour.
That said, it may take several sessions to get your desired final results. And, again, this treatment only works on gynecomastia caused by fat.
There are Many Treatments for Gynecomastia
When it comes right down to it, there are several treatments for gynecomastia, both novel and tested. If you are bothered by your male breast tissue, there’s no reason that you should feel stuck with it. Whether that tissue is caused by fat, skin, muscle, or some combination of all three, it’s likely that a conversation with your plastic surgeon can lead to a procedure that will suit your needs.
The first step, of course, is admitting that you want to change.