Can the Male Breast Come Back After Gynecomastia Surgery?

This question comes up frequently with San Francisco Bay Area men. It is understandable that this would be a concern and a factor in deciding whether or not to proceed with surgery, who wants to have a procedure if the condition is not going to be resolved permanently? As with all surgeries, there are no guarantees, however with gynecomastia surgery reoccurrence is rare.

It is important to see a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon who specializes in male breast reduction surgery to evaluate a patient’s condition, in some cases a referral to an endocrinologist may be advised. In a previous blog dated, June 21, 2011 various drugs are discussed that may be possible causes for the gynecomastia breast. If the use of marijuana or steroids or even some prescription drugs continue there is a small chance some regrowth may occur. If gynecomastia surgery is done on the adolescent boy of 13 or 14 years of age, there can be reoccurrence of the male breast due to the fact that the hormones are still active.  Sometimes the cause of the development of the male breast is unknown.

Gynecomastia will rarely return if enough breast tissue has been removed during surgery. The surgeon’s goal is to remove 80% to 90% of the gland, leaving enough to create a well contoured chest and for survival of the areola. Liposuction is generally done to remove fat but again not all fat is removed, so if the patient gains weight, there can be an increase of fat content of the overall chest and body.

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