Body Contouring for Men
The ideal male body shape is considered to be trim and athletic-looking, with broad shoulders and chest, a flat abdomen, and a narrow hip-thigh area. However, as men age, areas of fat tend to accumulate around the abdomen, the flanks (“love handles”), the breast area (a condition called gynecomastia), and along the chin and neck.
Men sometimes seek liposuction to remove these fatty areas that are resistant to diet and exercise. In many cases, liposuction alone can effectively correct these problem areas. Men retain their skin elasticity longer than women do, and the areas of fat beneath the skin tend to be firmer and more vascular than those in women. Because of these and other factors, liposuction in men is usually very effective. Men who have some loose, hanging skin as well as areas of excess fat may opt for a traditional excision procedure (surgical skin removal) in addition to liposuction.
Overdevelopment of the male breast area may result from several causes. When the overdevelopment presents as primarily fatty tissue and there is not excessive skin present, liposuction alone may achieve the desired result. An excision may be required on gynecomastia patients whose breast enlargement is made up of mostly glandular tissue rather than fat. If there is excessive skin in the breast area, a skin excision procedure will be necessary.
A full abdominoplasty or “tummy tuck” may be chosen by men who have hanging abdominal skin (usually the result of massive weight loss), loose abdominal muscles, and/or neglected hernias. It is a major surgical procedure that removes excess fat, tightens the muscles of the abdominal wall, and trims the waistline. Men who have a full abdominoplasty will be allowed graduated activity during the recovery period, which lasts for several weeks. Some patients aren’t released to return to work up to three weeks after surgery. Men with good skin elasticity, who have only a moderate amount of excess abdominal fat, may benefit from liposuction alone.
In recent years, plastic surgeons have developed ways of improving muscle contour with cosmetic implants and “sculpting” techniques. Calf implants, which were originally developed to restore leg contour in accident or polio victims, are now sometimes used to create cosmetic fullness in the lower leg. Pectoral implants have been used for reconstruction of the absent pectoral muscle in men who have Poland’s syndrome. Pectoral implants may now be used to enhance the chest in men desiring to have more prominence in that area. As an alternative, fat transfer from another area of the body to these areas may result in the desired improvement, without the use of implants.