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What You Should Know About Gynecomastia: Type 3

September 15, 2021

Gynecomastia comes in  varying degrees, which is why Dr. Cruise developed his classification system to better understand the different types. To continue with our series exploring the six types of gynecomastia, we will review Type 3 Gynecomastia. Below, you can learn more about the common characteristics, causes, and best treatment options for Type 3 gynecomastia.

What is Type 3 Gynecomastia?

Type 3 gynecomastia is the first category in which a breast roll is seen. Patients with Type 3 gynecomastia will see excess breast tissue which creates a slight roll over the chest fold, nipples that fall at or just below the chest fold, and moderate excess skin. They likely will not have sagging skin, though a small amount of excess skin will be relaxed and not firm enough to compress the tissue. Rather than the tight or rounded appearance seen in Type 2 gynecomastia, these patients will have a more horizontal shape in their excess breast tissue. The muscle border will be difficult to distinguish due to the excess tissue.

What Causes Type 3 Gynecomastia?

Type 3 gynecomastia is caused by excess breast tissue and fat in the chest. Most patients with this type of gynecomastia are 25-60 years old, and face the problem due to hormonal imbalance, genetics, or side effects of drug use. The appearance of Type 3 gynecomastia is caused by breast tissue that drapes over the pectoralis muscle border and some mild skin laxity which results in the slight drooping or rolled appearance. This excess tissue must then be removed so that the chest muscle can be visible and appear defined.

How is Type 3 Gynecomastia Treated?

Dr. Cruise will use one of two incision techniques to treat Type 3 gynecomastia. The first option is an inferior crescent incision, which is a semi-circular incision along the bottom border of the areola. The second is a superior and inferior crescent with short vertical incisions, which adds a semi-circular incision along the top of the areola as well as a small vertical incision extending down from the center of the areola. Through these incisions, the excess tissues can be removed. Crucially, the excess skin can be tightened for a smooth and flat appearance, allowing it to wrap around the border of the pectoralis muscle for a masculine chest contour. In the case of a superior crescent incision, the areola and nipple can be elevated for a natural-looking and proportionate position. Dr. Cruise favors crescent incisions rather than full circular incisions (commonly referred to as a “donut incision” or “donut lift”) to avoid creating a puckered appearance. His techniques allow for more natural looking results with minimal scarring. Type 3 requires the removal of both breast tissue and fatty tissue. The breast tissue is removed through the small incision mentioned above along with some liposuction along the lower breast pole. Dr. Cruise may also make tiny pin hole incisions on the lateral side of each breast to perform liposuction with skin tightening of the breast roll. In short, Type 3 generally consists of manual breast tissue removal, liposuction to remove fatty tissue and promote skin tightening. In many cases, Type 3 gynecomastia is able to be performed in-office under local anesthesia.

Schedule a Consultation

To learn more about gynecomastia surgery and the best techniques for your type of gynecomastia, schedule a consultation with Dr. Cruise. Call our Newport Beach office at (949) 644-4808 or contact us online. You can also send in photos for a virtual consultation

Plastic Surgeon | Website | + posts

Dr. Joseph Cruise is a board-certified plastic surgeon with over 20 years of experience. Regarded as one of the top gynecomastia surgeons in the world, Dr. Cruise has gynecomastia-specific content that can be found at Dr. Cruise has dedicated his career to cosmetic surgery but has also had extensive training in General Surgery, Hand Surgery, and Microvascular Surgery. Dr. Joseph Cruise is also a member of the Rhinoplasty Society as well as the American Society of Plastic Surgeons.

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