In order to plan for your male breast reduction, it is important to be informed about the recovery and to know what to expect during the days following surgery. Dr. Edward Kole, the Director of Surgery at The Kole Plastic Surgery Center in Bucks County, PA, believes that in order for patients to make informed decisions about their surgery, they should know beforehand what to expect. Dr. Kole finds that patients who are the most successful in their recovery and the most satisfied with their results are those patients who took the time to understand what to expect during the recovery period. For this reason, Dr. Kole has described below the recovery after male breast reduction surgery and has included several tips to keep in mind when preparing for your surgery.

During the procedure: Your male breast reduction will be performed by Dr. Kole under Intravenous sedation or general anesthesia at our licensed ambulatory surgical center or at a local area hospital. Generally, patients can return home the same day as the procedure. After waking up after surgery, you can expect to be groggy and some patients experience mild nausea. You can expect to feel discomfort or soreness in the chest area after surgery, which can be managed by pain medication that Dr. Kole will prescribe. It is important that before your surgery you designate a driver to pick you up, as you will not be able to drive after surgery.

The first 48 hours: It is recommended by Dr. Kole that you rest and remain in bed for the first 24-48 hours after a male breast reduction surgery. You can expect to be sore and experience some bruising and swelling, and this will occur regardless of the type of procedure done. If your surgery was more extensive, including large volume liposuction and skin excision, you may have a tube placed for drainage purposes, and the nurses will prepare you for keeping the area clean and for managing the drain tube. During the first few days after surgery, it is suggested that you have someone to help you out and keep you company. To reduce swelling after your male breast reduction, follow these tips:

  • Maintain a low-sodium diet
  • Stay hydrated
  • Rest and relax
  • Wear compression garments as prescribed
  • Use pain medicine if needed as prescribed

During this time, if you experience any sharp pain or bleeding, please contact your doctor immediately.

The first week after surgery: At 3 days after your surgery you will be seen in the office for a check of the surgical area. At that time, you will be able to shower and then will be required to replace the compression garment to keep the swelling down. At the end of the first week, you will return to have your sutures removed. These are typically placed in the fold of the armpit and the bottom of the areola.

2 weeks post-surgery: By this time, you will be able to resume some normal activities. Be cautious around any activity that requires heavy lifting or other extensive use of the chest muscles; you will most likely still experience soreness and any extensive lifting may slow down the healing process. However, it is good to stretch out the area, so take the time to develop a stretching routine to optimize the healing process.

Six weeks to 3 months post-surgery: By six weeks, the majority of the benefits of your male breast reduction surgery will be visible. Any swelling will be greatly reduced and you should notice that your breast now lies flat on the chest muscle without any protrusion. Additionally, scars will have completely healed by this time and the color of the scars will have faded from darker pink to a lighter color that matches your skin. Dr. Kole notes that it is important to protect scars from direct sunlight exposure for the first twelve months after surgery to avoid permanent pigmentation abnormalities. At the six-month mark, most patients reflect on the recovery process and are very satisfied with the results of surgery.

For more information about male breast reduction recovery or other aspects of the procedure, contact The Kole Plastic Surgery Center for a private complimentary consultation at 215-315-7655.