The results of gynecomastia surgery or male breast reduction are meant to be permanent since the glandular tissues, skin and extra fat will be gone for good. However it is vital for you to follow a few instructions and guidelines during the gynecomastia surgery recovery period so as to have the most hassle free post-surgical experience.
The total gynecomastia surgery recovery time generally varies between 4-6 weeks depending on how the patient’s body is healing. You need to undergo total bed rest for the first 3 days so as not to disrupt the healing process. Just after the surgery the patient might feel pain, discomfort and tightness in the area which can be managed with pain medications. The stitches will be removed within a week or ten days after the surgery after which there is a possibility of swelling.
One of the key factors behind a successful gynecomastia surgery experience is a proper understanding of the do’s and don’ts during the post-surgical period. Keep reading this article to find out all you need to know about what to expect after your gynecomastia surgery.
Things to expect after male breast reduction surgery:
This is one of the most common problems which can result from the anaesthesia, antibiotics or the pain medications. Always ensure that you take the medicines with proper food. If the problem persists then your doctor might suggest you to stop the pain medications.
Bruising and swelling:
The bruising and swelling are a normal occurrence after a gynecomastia surgery. The bruising can either be limited to the area around the breast or it could expand to the chest and abdomen. The bruises are usually red, black or purple or a combination of all these colours. The bruises would keep increasing in the first 3-4 days after the surgery and then slowly become yellow in colour and fade within another 7 days.
The swelling can be either localized or diffused. Localized swelling doesn’t require any kind of treatment. However in case of diffuse swelling you need to apply cold compress for two days followed by warm compress for another few days.
Severe swelling which can often accompany the surgery can be of the following kinds:
Hematoma: Is like a severe accumulation of fresh blood which might happen within ten days after the surgery. It leads to rather painful swellings on the breast area which might feel sore and hard to touch. While cases of severe swelling calls for immediate treatment, the next day treatment is okay for less severe cases.
Seroma: The seroma is a mixture of blood products and body fluids which is generally taken out through a large syringe puncture with local anaesthesia. The patients need pressure dressing for three to five days after the treatment of hematoma or seroma.
Lack of energy:
Your energy level is going to go down for up to eight weeks. Make sure to have a healthy diet and drink plenty of water. Also try to get as much rest and sleep as you can for quick recovery.
The incisions are going to fade out slowly though it might take up to a year for them to properly heal. Continue using the surgical take as instructed by your doctor. Incisions generally take some time to heal so you need a bit of patience. You can make use of scar reduction creams after consulting your surgeon.
Swollen chest area:
Your chest area is going to be tender and swollen for a few weeks after the surgery. There is no need to be bothered by this since the swelling is going to subside with time. Remember that your body heals asymmetrically which is why one side of your chest might be swollen while the other side is not. Consult your doctor if there is a marked difference in the swelling on the sides.
A few weeks after the surgery you might start to notice a few lumps in your chest area. This is nothing but the scar tissue formation which is one of the commonest side effects of a male breast reduction surgery. The scars might feel like a hard bumpy area around the nipples or towards the armpit.
Emotional ups and downs:
It is common for patients to go through emotional disturbances immediately after the surgery. The emotional ups and downs could continue for up to a week or ten days after the operation. Know that this is a very common side effects so try and reach out to your close ones.
Things to do and avoid after gynecomastia surgery:
Immediately after the surgery restrict your movement to less than 15 minutes a day. Try not to lift anything heavier than five lbs and avoid having sex for at least two weeks.
After a breast reduction surgery the patient needs to rest at an angle of 45 degree for a minimum of three days after which you can sleep normally if you want.
Direct exposure to sunlight should definitely be avoided for at least a month and half after the surgery. Contact with the sun rays would prolong the swelling and might lead to permanent discoloration. Moreover exposure to sun in the early stage can make the scar more noticeable afterwards because of hyper pigmentation. Make sure to apply a sun screen while going out topless for at least six months.
It is recommended that you don’t take a bath in the first 2 days following the surgery.
Make sure not to take any kind of blood thinners including aspirin coated items for at least 7 days.
You can get back to the sedentary jobs within three days after the operation. However jobs which are physically strenuous needs to be avoided for one or two weeks. Ideally you need to modify your jobs or get a helping hand.