Male breast enlargement or gynecomastia can be treated effectively with liposuction and direct removal of the gland. And a significant number of such patients can be treated under local anesthesia. With improvements in anesthesia techniques, it is possible to have a near pain free experience. There are certain advantages in undergoing the procedure under local anesthesia. These include:
- Faster recovery: Patients can return home soon after the procedure. The benefits also include the absence of general anesthesia associated effects like nausea and vomiting.
- Improvement in safety: It is safer when the surgery is performed under local anesthesia. Liposuction under local anesthesia has been shown to result in far less number of adverse events when compared to general anesthesia.
- Good pain relief in the postoperative period. Careful infiltration of local anesthetic solution is important for adequate pain relief during the procedure.This also has the added benefit of giving good pain relief for a long time after the surgery.
Some types of gynecomastia are particularly suitable for treatment under local anesthesia. These include:
- Glandular enlargement confined to an area close to the nipple areola. These cases usually present with a bulge under the areola.
- Milder forms of gynecomastia. Even larger variants can be treated in a motivated patient these take longer to complete.
There are certain disadvantages when doing liposuction and excision under local anesthesia when compared to general anesthesia. Perhaps the most important would be the longer duration of the procedure. Local anesthesia should be allowed to act for a sufficient duration before liposuction is begun. Similarly, it is common to again inject the anesthetic solution and wait before resuming the procedure. The procedure takes longer to complete under local anesthesia. Individuals who are afraid of needles and do not want to be awake during the surgery may not be right candidates for the procedure.
To summarize, local anesthesia is a good option if you are adequately motivated and have one of the milder forms of gynecomastia. The advantages include faster recovery and improved safety profile of the procedure.