British Blokes Banish the Boobs

moob surgery New York

According to a piece in the online version of the U.K.-based Daily Mail a few days ago, interest in male breast reduction surgery in England has skyrocketed in recent times. The article published in the health section of the British daily noted that inquiries about man boob surgery in 2015 increased a whopping 65% over the previous year.

Here in the U.S., figures for inquiries about gynecomastia surgery aren’t tracked as far as we know. But we do know what the leading professional societies report when it comes to the actual number of male breast reduction surgeries. The American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS), for instance, recorded more than 27,000 operations for 2015, a rise of 5% over 2014. We’re certain that not every inquiry in the U.K. resulted in an actual surgical procedure. But still, the numbers reported by the Daily Mail are somewhat startling. Why would British guys be suddenly so interested in man boob surgery? And what could be driving the apparent growth in focus in the U.K. as compared to the U.S? We can only speculate about this. But since we have more than 30 years of experience performing surgery for gynecomastia in New York, we do have some educated guesses to offer.

History of Expertise

It’s likely that plastic surgeons began performing gynecomastia surgery for significant numbers of guys in the U.S. earlier than doctors in other countries, including England. Therefore, more surgeons have developed expertise and more guys have had the opportunity for successful treatment. Why do we believe this is the case? The other leading professional society, the American Association for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, has been keeping statistics for nearly 20 years. Even back when they began tracking numbers in 1997, more than 11,000 men in this country chose to have male breast reduction. And that number has risen by 173% during the last two decades. We were fortunate to learn at the side of one of the pioneers of successful man boob surgery even before then. And we can attest to the high interest on the part of American men in getting rid of female-like breasts. As word circulated that surgery is a viable option, we welcomed increasing numbers of guys with man boobs to New York to work with us.

The Media Factor

Interestingly, the Daily Mail reported that within the 65% growth in inquiries gynecomastia surgery, two-thirds of the contacts were men aged 18-34. One could speculate that guys in that age bracket are likely to be media savvy, and the U.K. press is increasingly in the habit of “outing” celebrities with moobs just as we are here in the U.S. In fact, the same Daily Mail article remarked on leading man boob sufferers Ricky Gervais, Simon Cowell and James Argent. Does media coverage like this encourage guys to seek a surgical solution for man boobs? We can’t draw a direct correlation, but it does seem obvious that, the more ordinary people learn about cosmetic surgery and celebrities who choose it from the media, the more accepted the notion becomes.

Insurance Matters

Most guys with man boobs in the U.S. have found it next to impossible to get insurance coverage for gynecomastia surgery. While it is not necessarily easy or quick to secure coverage from the British National Health Service (NHS), it IS possible. The NHS website states the following: Normally, you'll need to pay for breast reduction surgery privately. But the NHS may provide this for you if you've had gynecomastia for a long time, it has not responded to other treatments, and it's causing you a lot of distress or pain. When it comes to man boobs in the U.S. and the U.K., expert surgeons may have emerged on different timelines, insurance coverage isn’t equally accessible, and there may be a host of other reasons trends have evolved in their own ways. But one thing’s bound to be similar on both sides of the Atlantic: guys generally do not accept their man boobs easily. And that’s where board certified plastic surgeons with experience treating the condition can help. Contact us if you’d like to explore your options for moob surgery in New York.

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