Male Breast Reduction

Gynecomastia Surgery - feel good going shirtless with a flatter, firmer and more masculine chest

The Polyclinic Plastic Surgery Center in Seattle provides an effective and safe male breast reduction procedure, also known as gynecomastia surgery, to correct overdeveloped breasts in men.  Using various techniques, we remove excess fat and glandular tissue to restore a flatter, firmer, and more masculine chest contour.  Get your self-confidence back and schedule a consultation today with our award-winning surgeons.

What is Male Breast Reduction Surgery? 

A male breast reduction is the most effective known treatment for gynecomastia and pseudogynecomastia, or enlarged male breasts.  This cosmetic surgery procedure removes excess fat and/or glandular tissue to restore a flatter, firmer and more masculine contour to the chest.

Due to genetics, use of certain medications, life style, or other unspecified reasons,  men can develop the appearance of enlarged breasts. It is estimated that up to 50% of men in the United States experience some degree of gynecomastia during their lifetime. Gynecomastia can present at any age, and male breast reduction can be performed safely and successfully on teenagers and adult men alike.

Quick Facts

  • Estimated 50% of men in the US experience degrees of gynecomastia during their lifetime.

  • Liposuction alone can be an effective treatment for gynecomastia 

  • Male breast reduction can also treat puffy nipples

  • Most patients return to work or school in less than 1 week

  • Surgery results are typically permanent, but can be affected by weight gain or certain medications

What is the difference between Gynecomastia and Pseudogynecomastia?

Physicians recognize two unique types of enlarged breasts (aka. man boobs) —gynecomastia and pseudogynecomastia. There are key differences between these conditions and distinguishing between the two makes a difference when addressing.

There are two tissues that make up both male and female breasts — glandular tissue and fatty tissue.  Gynecomastia is a proliferation of both of the types of tissue, whereas pseudogynecomastia is an excess of fatty tissue.

The excess fatty tissue seen pseudogynecomastia typically happens when gaining weight, and is usually the result of low levels of exercise and poor diet.  This can be treated with our male breast reduction procedures using a liposuction  technique but can also be addressed with the right fitness activity and diet.  Men with gynecomastia have more gland issues to contend with and is more complicated to treat; therefore, will require removal of glandular tissue using our excision technique.  Learn about our various techniques below.  

Gynecomastia is a proliferation of both fatty and glandular tissue, whereas pseudogynecomastia is an excess of fatty tissue.

What are the benefits of Breast Reduction Surgery?

While losing weight can help reduce the appearance of male breasts for some men, often times there is excess glandular tissue as well, causing even very lean patients to notice enlarged breasts. Currently, male breast reduction is the only consistently effective treatment for gynecomastia that has long lasting, if not permanent, results. Following this surgery, patients commonly say they feel comfortable going shirtless for the first time in years, and report an enhanced sense of self-confidence.

If you are uncomfortable or self-conscious about the appearance of your chest, or if you find yourself avoiding certain activities because you are afraid to show your chest, male breast reduction is an option to consider. With the help of our award-winning surgeons, the procedure offers dramatic, near immediate improvements with minimal scarring.

Who is an ideal candidate ?

  • Men whose condition cannot be corrected through alternative medical treatments
  • Healthy individuals who do not have a life-threatening illness or medical conditions that can impair healing
  • Nonsmokers and non-drug users
  • Men with a positive outlook and specific goals in mind for improving the physical symptoms of gynecomastia
  • Men who are physically healthy and of relatively normal weight
  • Men who have realistic expectations
  • Men whose breast development has stabilized
  • Men who are bothered by the feeling that their breasts are too large

Adolescents may benefit from surgery, although secondary procedures may be needed in the future should breast development continue.

TEchnique Options

What are the different procedure techniques available?  

What are the different types of gynecomastia procedures?


In cases where enlarged breasts are primarily the result of excess fatty tissue (aka. Pseudogynecomastia), liposuction techniques alone may be used.  This requires insertion of a cannula, a thin hollow tube, through several small incisions.  The cannula is moved back and forth in a controlled motion to loosen the excess fat, which is then removed from the body by vacuum suction. There are various lipounction techniques that can be used.  The technique most appropriate in your case will be defined prior to your procedure.

The recovery process following liposuction is typically quite tolerable. Patients are often given a compression garment to wear for the first few weeks after surgery; this helps to minimize swelling and offers support to the healing tissues. While vigorous exercise is typically off-limits for about 3 weeks, many men return to work or school within several days after their procedures. However, it is important to understand that everyone heals at a unique pace; we will give you individualized instructions for recovery.


More severe cases of gynecomastia may require surgical tissue excision to achieve optimal results. Additionally, patients who have stretched, sagging skin around the breasts will usually require this approach. Tissue excisions allows us to remove a greater amount of glandular tissue and/or skin that cannot be successfully treated with liposuction alone. 
Excision  is also necessary if the areola will be reduced or the nipple will be repositioned to a more natural male contour. 

Male breast reduction with tissue excision is typically performed as an outpatient procedure using general anesthesia or local anesthesia with sedation. The recovery process is similar to that for liposuction; however, it is common for patients to experience soreness and some swelling. Typically, patients feel ready to return to work within 1 week of surgery, and a gradual return to exercise is usually permitted after the first couple of weeks.

Life after male breast reduction surgery? 

After gynecomastia surgery, you should notice an immediate improvement in the shape and appearance of your chest. While you may feel sore for a few days, pain is usually minimal.  While your cosmetic surgeon will likely prescribe some pain medication, many men find that over-the-counter options, such as Tylenol, is sufficient. If you are given a compression garment, wear it. This will enhance your comfort and help your chest heal optimally.

While every patient’s healing process is unique, most patients feel ready to return to work just a few days after a male breast reduction, depending on the nature of their work. Some men experience a loss of sensation in the treated areas after a male breast reduction, but this is almost always temporary. Any loss of sensation should gradually return over the months following your procedure.

Most patients feel ready to return to work just a few days after a male breast reduction, depending on the nature of their work

How do I maintain results from a male breast reduction?

Male breast reduction results are meant to be permanent – the excess fat, glandular tissue and skin removed are gone for good. However, it’s important to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Significant weight gain, steroid use, or certain medical conditions could result in a recurrence of gynecomastia. Additionally, drugs that influence testosterone levels could also affect your results. An experienced, board certified cosmetic surgeon can help you learn what to do to maintain your results for the long term.

If you are suffering from gynecomastia, male breast reduction could be the right solution to correct this condition and help you feel more confident in your appearance.

Can you perform other procedures in conjunction with male breast reduction surgery?

Yes.  If you are committed to cosmetically improving your chest area and would also like to improve other areas of your body, it is often advantageous to consider performing  certain procedures in conjunction with each other. This is particularly applicable if excess fat deposit exists as well as loose skin through out the body as a result of  weight loss. Body contouring procedures such as liposuction of the torso area, abdomen, and arms can address these cosmetic issues.   We also recommend considering our male facial surgery procedures to improve the contours of your face and neck area to achieve a more holistic youthful and fit appearance. 

How much does male breast reduction cost?

Male breast reduction costs will vary based on technique and scope.  We will provide a detailed quote at the time of your consultation after examining you physically and conducting a thorough review of your medical history. If breast reduction is a medical necessity, insurance companies may cover part or all of your costs. We can also provide financing options from reputable healthcare lenders.

As men's interest in plastic surgery & cosmetic improvements increases into the 21st century, we strive to provide quality options to meet their unique needs with  customized care, surgical excellence, and full aesthetic support.  

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