You may not have heard of 'gynecomastia' before – but search the term on Instagram and you'll encounter an endless feed of male breast reduction surgery before and after shots.
Male breast reduction surgery for 'man boobs' or gynecomastia – enlarged breast tissue in men due to a number of causes - is a common cosmetic surgery request by Plastic Surgeon Dr Mark Edinburg's patients.
Otoplasty "to set the ears back" is another common procedure men are raising their hands for at the Eden Institute - Edinburg's Sydney-based practices.
The big requests
Rhinoplasties (nose jobs), tummy tucks, and liposuction are other common requests from his male patients. Tummy tucks are opted for by men who have a lost a lot of weight after bariatric (weight loss) surgery and have excessive abdominal tissue, "and may also include surgery for thighs, breasts and arms," Edinburg said.
Facial rejuvenation is also high in demand; that's eyelid or brow surgery, or a facelift.
Want a little something done without having to go under the knife?
Non-surgical cosmetic procedures, including laser (for pigmentation), botox, and fillers "have been getting a lot more common in men over the last few years," Edinburg said.
Whether you're a man or a woman, "cosmetic surgery is part and parcel of normal life now," he said.
Don't be shy
2017 saw 1.3 million cosmetic surgery procedures being performed on men in the United States, according to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons.
"I've had about a 30 percent rise in the number of male patients in the last four to five years," said Edinburg. Men now account for about 20 percent of his clientele.
"For most of the surgeries I do, men come in and state openly, 'This is what I want.' Although I do see embarrassment from patients with male breasts, and younger guys seem to be embarrassed about their ears sticking out."
The increase of men seeking surgery is a flow on effect of digital culture.
"I'm sure what drives that is social media. There's a lot more stuff out there [about plastic surgery procedures for men] than there used to be. What gives them the confidence to go ahead with the surgery is that they're well read, well informed and know other men are having it done as well.
"Men are also wanting plastic surgery I think from a motivational point of view," Edinburg said.
"They might be seeking to improve their appearance because they've changed partners, or want to feel better about themselves [in general]. Or they might want to be more presentable in their work environment, to allow them to stay there for longer."
The proof is in the (Instagram) picture
Dr Edinburg sees his patients one week, six weeks and then six months after surgery, by which time he said there is a "definite improvement in self-confidence and self-esteem, [especially] for patients with a male breast reduction.
"They'll [say they can finally] go to the gym and take their shirts off," Edinburg said.
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