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Can Exercise Reduce Large Male Breasts?

Many of our male patients incorporate activities like push-ups and bench presses into their exercise routines in the interest of firming their chest muscles. Unfortunately, however, patients who suffer from gynecomastia – an overabundance of glandular tissue in the breasts – often find that even the most rigorous workout routine cannot get rid of this sometimes embarrassing concern. This prompts many of them to ask themselves, “Is exercising even worth it?” 

According to Dr. Joseph DiBello, our Philadelphia plastic surgeon, there are a few distinct reasons why gynecomastia may not respond to exercise. Firstly, it is important to note that the human breast is primarily constructed of three types of tissue: connective, glandular, and adipose (fatty) tissue. The term for excess fatty breast tissue in men is “pseudogynecomastia,” a diagnosis that is actually independent from traditional gynecomastia. Patients with pseudogynecomastia are often experiencing obesity and are much more likely to reduce their breast size through exercise, diet, and general adherence to a healthy lifestyle.

Meanwhile, “true gynecomastia” is characterized by an abnormal overdevelopment of glandular tissue in the breasts. The condition can be the result of genetics or hormonal issues, and can also present as a side effect of certain medications or drugs (e.g. steroids or marijuana). Because glandular tissue is much denser than adipose tissue and cannot be removed through exercise, Dr. DiBello typically advises patients with true gynecomastia to consider male breast reduction surgery. 

Male breast reduction surgery is an extremely customizable procedure. Depending on the patient’s unique case, Dr. DiBello can employ advanced liposuction techniques or meticulous excision of skin through an incision in the areola. No matter the course of the surgery, the goal of male breast reduction is to create the sculpted, toned chest so many gynecomastia patients desire.

If you would like to determine whether male breast reduction surgery or another procedure is right for you, we encourage you to schedule a consultation with Dr. DiBello today.

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