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Gynaecomastia

Dr Prendergast is an expert in the treatment of gynaecomastia, or enlarged male breasts, treating all his patients under local anaesthesia.  Gynaecomastia affects up to one third of men and is usually a result of residual breast tissue after puberty. The accumulation of stubborn fat, termed pseudogynaecomastia, makes it even more noticeable.  The male chest area is often resistant to diet and exercise, and sometimes weight loss can actually highlight the unwanted contours of the chest even more. The treatment takes about an hour, and you can return to your usual activities quickly, although you will be required to wear a snug compression garment under your clothes for four weeks. We see men every day in the clinic interested in a permanent, effective solution for gynaecomastia. Many have been thinking about it for years but have not made the move to do something until they make contact with us. Dr Prendergast will examine you and chat with you about the exact treatment that will be best for you.

Treatments for gynaecomastia

Excision (removal through a small incision at the nipple area)

What is gynaecomastia?

Gynaecomastia is the presence of female-looking breasts in a man. It can have various shapes and sizes.

Is it actually breast (glandular) tissue in my chest?

Yes, true gynaecomastia is caused by glandular tissue that is somewhat enlarged. However, in reality, gynaecomastia is a combination of glandular tissue and fatty tissue, making certain treatments more effective than others at resolving the issue.

Is gynaecomastia harmful?

The vast majority of cases of gynaecomastia are due to residual tissue after puberty when hormone changes occur, and are harmless. Rarely, hormone changes due to other conditions can result in gynaecomastia. Certain medications can also cause gynaecomstia.

What are the best treatment options for gynaecomastia?

Physically removing the tissue that causes the unwanted chest contours is the only effective treatment. Medications or external, non-invasive treatments do not produce good results.  The best options are liposuction, ultrasound-assisted liposuction, and excision. Excision involves surgically cutting out the glandular tissue.

What is ultrasound-assisted liposuction?

This involves gently breaking up or “melting” the tissue with special probes before removal through suction. It is particularly useful for the male chest because fat and gland in this area can be extremely firm. Dr Prendergast was the first to use the most advanced form of ultrasound-assisted liposuction, called Vaser, in Ireland and has extensive experience in the technique.

Is Vaser better than traditional liposuction for gynaecomastia?

Vaser lipo is particularly well suited for gynaecomastia, breaking down unwanted fat and gland with minimal bleeding and with superior skin tightening compared to traditional liposuction.

Why not just cut the gland out with surgery?

Excision, or removing the gland with a knife, effectively removes the gland behind the nipple areola complex (NAC) but does little to contour the rest of the chest, or remove fat close to the armpit which can also be bothersome.

Can Vaser remove all of the gland?

If the gland is very firm and Vaser is not enough to remove the last bit of glandular tissue that is causing a significant contour irregularity or bulge, then Dr Prendergast will combine Vaser with a small incision around the nipple to flatten the chest more to get an excellent result. However, most of the time excision is not necessary. Dr Prendergast will discuss the best options for you during the consultation.

Do I have to have a general anaesthetic?

No! There’s no need to be asleep for the treatment of gynaecomastia. Dr Prendergast is an expert in tumescent local anaesthesia. After receiving a relaxing tablet, diluted anaesthetic fluid is sprinkled into the tissues beneath the skin and the procedure is then painless.

What kind of results can I expect?

We have extensive experience in male breast reduction and produce excellent results for our many male patients who opt for this procedure. Through careful pre-procedure planning, contouring of the fat and gland in the entire chest, and proper post-procedure advice and care, you can expect a positive experience and smooth journey with your male breast reduction treatment at Venus Medical.

What about the skin?

Vaser is superior to traditional liposuction for skin tightening after removing the fat and tissue. If the skin is quite loose to start with, Dr Prendergast will discuss the option of using our BodyTite device for further skin tightening. This is performed at the same time as the Vaser procedure.

Are the results permanent?

The fat cells and glandular tissue that is removed will not come back. If you put on a large amount of weight, residual fat cells can get larger. With normal aging, skin can become loose, but the results of this procedure are lasting.

Will I have scars?

For Vaser, we use only tiny 4mm incisions; the scars fade over time. If you have excision as well, the scar is very neat and not very visible, located just around the nipple in the areola. If you have a tendency for red scars, we can use our VBeam laser to improve fading of these.

How do I know if I’m suitable?

We advise you to call us and arrange an appointment with Dr Prendergast who will discuss the procedure and your suitability with you. We look forward to welcoming you to the clinic. 

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