Gynecomastia surgery is a surgical technique aimed at removing excess fat, glandular tissue, and/or excess skin from enlarged male breasts. When gynecomastia has become severe, the weight of the overdeveloped breast tissue can cause the breasts to sag. The areola (nipple) area may also become stretched and darkened. A gynecomastia surgeon can reduce the size of the breast tissue and resize/reposition the nipples to leave masculine contours behind.
A common question asked of gynecomastia surgeons during the initial consultation is if death can occur during the procedure. This post will seek to answer that question. You will also learn more about the gynecomastia procedure and how it works, and if there are any other risks involved besides the risk of gynecomastia surgery death. Keep reading to learn more.
Don’t want to wait until the end? Call the Gynecomastia Center of Los Angeles to schedule a consultation with Doctor Babak Moeinolmolki in Los Angeles, California at (310)861-3799.
Gynecomastia accounts for greater than 65% of all male breast disorders, according to the ASPS (American Society of Plastic Surgeons). In a majority of cases, the cause of enlarged breast growth is unknown. The breasts could grow because of a hormonal imbalance. Namely, an imbalance of the sex hormones testosterone and estrogen. Other causes include genetics, endocrine disorders, blood-pressure medicines, illicit drug use, and steroid abuse.
Not all men with gyno will require surgery. Some teenagers who experience the condition during puberty will see the condition resolve itself within 2 years. If the gynecomastia does not resolve, surgery may be required.
Gynecomastia surgery is a customizable procedure that can include liposuction, glandular tissue removal, and, in some cases, excess skin removal.
Liposuction is used if the breasts are composed of primarily excessive fatty tissue. If excess glandular tissue is the primary cause, the tissue can be removed with a scalpel. The excision can be performed alone or in combination with liposuction.
When excision is used, the incision is made on the edge of the areola (nipple) or in the underarm. Once the incision is made, the surgeon cuts away the excess glandular tissue, skin, and fat from around the pigmented area surrounding the nipple. The tissue is also removed from the bottom of the breast by working through the same incision. If excess skin is also required to be removed, larger incisions may be employed (which can lead to larger, more visible scars).
When liposuction is used to remove fatty tissue from around the breast area, a slim, hollow tube called a cannula is inserted directly through the existing incisions. The cannula is suction powered, which allows for direct fat cell extraction.
Gynecomastia surgery is usually painless with most surgeries taking around an hour and a half to complete. You will usually find yourself returning home the same day. Sometimes an overnight stay in the hospital is recommended, whereby your vital signs will be closely monitored until you are discharged and allowed to return home.
Male breast reduction surgery is performed under either general anesthesia or local anesthesia with sedation. Your surgeon will discuss anesthesia options with you so that you can decide which you would like for optimal health and comfort.
Gynecomastia surgery is the only permanent method we currently have for permanently removing excess tissue and fat from the chest area. Gynecomastia surgery can improve your confidence and self-image. You may find yourself wearing clothes you never wanted to before, such as tight shirts. And swimming with your shirt off may become something you want to do as opposed to something you dread.
As with all surgical procedures, gynecomastia surgery does come with risk. Potential surgery risks include:
Male breast growth can occur in one or both breasts. Regardless, male breast reduction surgery can result in some degree of asymmetry. There may be differences in breast size or nipple shape and size following the procedure.
Change in Skin and Nipple Sensation
After waking up from surgery you may experience diminished sensitivity or a loss of feeling. This side effect may get better after a few months.
While optimal results are expected, there is no guarantee you will experience the intended results. You may be disappointed with the contours or shape of your newly configured chest. This is why it is paramount that you choose your gynecomastia surgeon carefully based on skill, experience, and artistic ability.
Some medical conditions, medications, and smoking tobacco can interfere with healing. Patients with extreme weight loss could have healing delays as a result of incisions coming apart, tissue changes requiring the need for revision surgery, and infection.
Nipple and Areolar Necrosis
While this side effect is rare, the area around the nipple may experience poor blood flow following surgery, which could result in the tissue dying. This can lead to a wound and delayed healing. The nipple can be reconstructed if the nipple and areola deteriorate completely.
You may experience bleeding during or after surgery. Should bleeding occur post-surgery, you may require emergency treatment to drain the excess fluid. Some patients require a blood transfusion, though this side effect is also rare.
Incisions made during surgery are bound to leave scars. Some scars are more visible than others. Taking care of your wounds post-surgery by following your surgeon’s advice can keep scarring to a minimum. In rare cases, abnormal scars can occur. In some cases, scars may require surgical treatment or revision surgery to minimize their appearance.
Extra firmness around the chest can occur after surgery. This loss of suppleness is usually caused by internal scarring. Additional treatment can be required after surgery if you experience this unfortunate side effect.
Major Wound Separation
Your surgical wounds can separate following male breast reduction surgery. If this side effect occurs, revision surgery may be required.
Damage to Deeper Structures
There is a potential for deeper structures to become injured. This includes damage to blood vessels, nerves, muscles, and the lungs. Injury to these deeper tissues can be temporary or permanent.
Fatty tissue located deep within the skin could die after gynecomastia surgery. This can cause certain tissues to become firmer. Revision surgery to remove the necrotized tissue may be required.
In rare cases, male breast reduction surgery can cause severe trauma, especially when two or more extensive procedures are performed. While severe complications are rare, infections or excessive fluid loss can lead to severe injury or even death.
During gynecomastia surgery, both local anesthetic, and general anesthesia may be used. Both of these medicines involve risks to your health. Potential complications include injury and death.
Cardiac and Pulmonary Complications
Pulmonary complications can occur along with blood clots, pneumonia, or partial collapse of the lungs following the administration of general anesthesia. Cardiac complications are a risk with any surgical procedure or anesthesia, even in patients with no apparent symptoms.
Thrombosed veins occasionally develop in the area of the breast surrounding IV sites. This side effect can usually resolve without medical treatment. Taking estrogen pills can increase your risk of thrombosed veins, as can having a personal history of clotting problems.
While rare, you can experience allergies to tape, blood products, suture materials, blues, and topical preparations. Anaphylaxis (shock) can occur in response to drugs used during surgery and prescription medicines.
Fat and Air Embolism
While also rare, fat particles or air can enter the vascular system before traveling to the heart, brain, or lungs. This can result in severe complications including death.
As you probably noticed, death is listed as a potential complication associated with several side effects, most of them involving the administration of general anesthesia. Any time you are given general anesthesia, an anesthetist or anesthetist’s assistant will sit bedside with you while carefully observing your vital signs. This ensures your safety both during and after gynecomastia surgery.
While any side effect is possible, you should know that gynecomastia surgery is considered a safe and effective cosmetic procedure. In fact, the gynecomastia surgery death rate for male breast reduction surgery is around 1 in several million.
Has anyone died from gynecomastia surgery? There was a case in India a few years ago of a boy who died during gynecomastia surgery due to a reaction to anesthesia. But even that case is rare. And hospital standards are much more tightly controlled compared to those outside of the country.
To ensure your safety, your gynecomastia surgeon will spend considerable time assessing the state of your health, health history, and your tolerance to various medicines before scheduling you for surgery. The more experienced your surgeon, the lower your chances of experiencing side effects, including death, following a gynecomastia procedure.
Most of the gynecomastia risks you have read about in the list above are similar to all other surgical procedures. Even the American Society of Plastic Surgeons considers gynecomastia surgery incredibly safe.
The success and safety of your male breast reduction surgery depend on how carefully you search for a gynecomastia surgeon. During a consultation with a surgeon, you will be asked a number of questions about your health, surgical goals, and lifestyle.
During this discreet meeting, you will discuss your expectations and desired outcome. You’ll be asked about your medical conditions, drug allergies, and any medical treatments you may have received. Tell your surgeon about medications you are currently taking, vitamins you supplement with, alcohol you drink, tobacco you smoke or chew, and drugs you use including steroids.
You will also be tested and assessed to ensure gynecomastia surgery is safe and effective for the success of your aesthetic goals.
After surgery, you can expect more masculine contours, symmetrical areolas, and a flatter chest devoid of excess fat or the appearance of female-like breasts.
The results of gynecomastia surgery are immediately noticeable, though some swelling and bruising may be present. Your gynecomastia surgeon will give you a compression garment to wear to aid with healing. You should be back to your normal routine after 6 to 8 weeks, especially if you hope to engage in heavy weightlifting.
Keep an eye out for potential complications during gyno surgery recovery which can include infection, fever, unusual swelling, leg pain, shortness of breath, extreme pain, and constipation. Most people recover without experiencing these rare complications. If you do experience any of them, contact your gynecomastia specialist immediately.
By now you know more about gynecomastia and the techniques involved. As far as gynecomastia surgery death is concerned, you are more familiar with the potential side effects of male breast reduction including death. You also know that severe side effects including death are incredibly rare.
You can minimize and mitigate the chance of severe side effects by calling the best gynecomastia surgeon working in & near Los Angeles. Instead of randomly Googling, “Help with Gynecomastia Near Me,” contact the Gynecomastia Center of Los Angeles to schedule a discreet consultation with Doctor Babak Moeinolmolki.
Dial (310)861-3799 to get started on the path to masculine contours and greater self-esteem.
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