Seattle Gynecomastia Specialist – Dr. David Pratt
Male Breast Reduction in Seattle, Bellevue, Tacoma and Everett, WA
Forty to sixty percent of men today are eventually affected by a condition called ‘Gynecomastia’, an enlargement of one or both breasts.In our cosmetic surgery facility here in the greater Seattle area, we have seen an increase in the number of men who present with this complaint.
Because of embarrassment, men with this condition often avoid exposing their chests during many of the normal activities others take for granted, such as swimming, exercise, and sex.
Fortunately, there are several surgical procedures which can help remove excess male breast tissue.
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What is the best treatment for Gynecomastia?
The treatment of Gynecomastia depends on the underlying cause. It is very important to review your complete medical history with Dr. Pratt, a renowned Seattle male breast reduction specialist, during your initial consultation in order to rule out any specific medical problems.
Although certain drugs (e.g. estrogen-containing medications, anabolic steroids, etc.) or specific medical conditions (e.g. impaired liver function, cancer, etc.) can cause male breast enlargement, in most cases, the exact cause is unknown. Longstanding Gynecomastia in a patient that has no obvious cause may be a candidate for surgical treatment.
The surgical options for Seattle / Bellevue gynecomastia patients include liposuction or direct surgical excision.
- Liposuction – The term “Liposculpture” is actually more descriptive, since the surgeon permanently changes the contour of the chest with this procedure. Liposuction surgery is performed in the main operating room at Dr. Pratt’s state-of-the-art plastic surgery facility or a hospital outpatient surgicenter and usually lasts 1 hour. If only a small amount of breast tissue requires removal, liposuction can often be performed under local anesthesia, which numbs only the breast area. A general anesthesia will be used for more extensive procedures or when it is performed in conjunction with other cosmetic procedures, such as abdominoplasty.
- Direct Excision – In male breast reduction Seattle and Bellevue patients with severe gynecomastia and significant excess skin, surgical removal of both skin and breast tissue is sometimes required to obtain a satisfactory result. This procedure closely resembles a breast reduction in the female breast, with similar scars resulting.
- Minimallly Invasive Excision – In some Seattle male breast reduction patients, liposuction alone may leave stubborn residual breast tissue behind. In this case, Dr. Pratt may chose to make an incision, usually around the areola, and remove this tissue directly.
Is Liposuction of Gynecomastia painful?
Typically, patients report minimal pain when undergoing liposuction for Gynecomastia. Prior to completion of the procedure, Dr. Pratt will be sure to inject a numbing medicine in the surgical area in order to increase your comfort when you awaken from anesthesia.
Pain from liposuction is usually well controlled with oral pain medication. Learn more about our PainBuster Program. Nausea and vomiting can contribute significantly to postoperative discomfort, thus Dr. Pratt will prescribe an anti-nausea “patch” prior to your surgery (click here to learn more about our No Nausea protocol.
Who is a good candidate for treatment of Gynecomastia?
Surgery to correct Gynecomastia is available for healthy men of any age. It is an advantage to have firm, elastic skin that will easily shrink down to your new shape.
Overweight men, especially obese men, may not be good candidates unless they first lose weight. If the Gynecomastia is caused by certain drugs it would be best to stop the medication and see if breast size diminishes before considering surgery.
At what age does Gynecomastia first appear?
It usually first appears during early adolescence, most likely due to a natural hormonal imbalance which typically occurs at this age. In most cases Gynecomastia resolves on it’s own after a year or two. This condition can also occur in older men. Causes are not always clear.
In older men, Gynecomastia could be linked to chronic kidney or liver disease, decreased testosterone production, some medications, and even spinal cord injury. Certainly, excessive weight gain will often show up in the chest area.
Most cases of Gynecomastia occurring in adult patients are considered “idiopathic”, having no obvious known cause.
What happens the day of surgery?
The area to be treated is carefully marked by Dr. Pratt prior to surgery. In most cases of Gynecomastia, liposuction is the sole method of treatment needed for an excellent result.
A hollow tube (cannula) is inserted into the tissues and the other end is connected to a device that suctions out the fatty breast tissue. If direct excision of breast tissue is required, an incision will be made around the areola and the offending tissue will be surgically removed.
What are the types of Liposuction available?
Dr. Pratt will often combine both the Tumescent and Power-Assisted Liposuction (PAL) techniques in the removal of breast tissue.
Tumescent Liposuction, a technique in which a medicated solution is injected into breast before the tissue is removed, is the technique most commonly used by Dr. Pratt.
The fluids are a mixture of intravenous (saline) salt solution and epinephrine (a drug that contracts blood vessels) facilitates breast tissue removal and reduces bleeding during the procedure as well as bruising following surgery.
Power-Assisted Liposuction (PAL) is a technique in which the cannula is attached to a “handle” which contains a motor that rapidly moves the tip of the cannula in and out a fraction of an inch, thus assisting in the liposuction procedure and improving the surgeon’s ability to precisely sculpt the chest.
Direct Excision: In patients with severe Gynecomastia and significant skin excess, surgical removal of both skin and breast tissue is sometimes required to obtain a satisfactory result. This procedure may sometimes be performed through a scar placed around the areola. In those with severe skin excess, the procedure more closely resembles a breast reduction in the female breast, with similar scars resulting.
What happens after my surgery?
Prior to completion of the procedure, Dr. Pratt will inject a numbing solution into the surgical area, thus the patient is typically quite comfortable upon awakening from the anesthesia. The visible difference in your physique will be immediately obvious.
Over the next week or so, the breasts will swell significantly, and this can take six months to resolve. As the swelling subsides, you’ll be seeing more and more of your new shape. To aid in reducing swelling, Dr. Pratt will have you wear an elastic pressure garment twenty four hours a day for four weeks following surgery. You will most likely experience some discomfort for several weeks following the procedure, thus Dr. Pratt will prescribe pain medication to ease you through the first few weeks.
Why should I consider Dr. David Pratt to perform my Male Breast Reduction surgery?
Dr. Pratt is considered a premier plastic surgeon with many years of experience in performing male breast reduction surgery, including liposuction and direct excision of enlarged breasts. In addition, he has helped countless mommy makeover, breast augmentation, facelift and rhinoplasty patients realize their dreams of an enhanced image.
Dr. Pratt and his staff are passionate about cosmetic surgery and dedicated to patient education and satisfaction. Dr. Pratt’s utmost concern is the comfort and safety of each and every patient. Our modern Seattle area offices offer a warm and friendly feeling, as well as the most recent advances and sophisticated technology available today.
I am interested, what do I do next?
Seeking reliable answers to your questions about male breast reduction surgery? Schedule your gynecomastia consultation with Dr. David Pratt to find out if you are a good candidate for one or more of these procedures.
Dr. Pratt’s office serves the greater Seattle area, including Bellevue, Everett, Kirkland and Tacoma, with office hours that suit your busy lifestyle. Go ahead and live your dreams!