Male Body Contouring

Sydney cosmetic plastic surgeon Dr Darryl Hodgkinson discusses some of the procedures available for male body contouring.

Men’s Body Contouring

The percentage of males seeking cosmetic surgical enhancement has increased steadily over the last 10 years. The most common requests in body contour surgery are for reduction of ‘man boobs’, recently highlighted by myself on a Channel 7 program in April 2007, and liposuction of the ‘beer belly’ and ‘love handle’ areas.

Liposculpture of the male torso involves reshaping the area to expose often well-developed muscles, in particular the pectoral (pecs), latissimus (lats) and abdominal (‘six pack’) muscles, which have been covered by fat. Body etching is a similar technique that aims to recreate the attractive grooves and ‘shelving’ of a muscular male body. It does this by exaggerating the lateral roll of the ‘pec’; giving definition to the wedge of a male back, particularly the ‘lats’; and giving the abdomen the ‘six pack’ look.

Less frequent procedures include pectoral implants for under-developed chests, calf implants for ‘bird legs’ and buttock implants for a ‘flat butt’.

Procedure and recovery

A body contouring procedure utilises traditional, ultrasonic and pneumatic liposculpture. It is normally carried out under a light general anesthetic and tumescent infiltration on an outpatient surgical basis. The maximum amount of fat that is removed is four to five litres at one time. Patients naturally have some discomfort after the procedure but rarely need strong pain medication. Most patients take about a week off work. Complications are rare but normal bruising and swelling occur and take a variable time, usually two to three weeks, to resolve. Most patients can resume near normal exercise and gym activities in three to five weeks.

I have found that male patients are just as concerned as female patients about fat accumulation. I encourage patients to follow a sensible diet and regular exercise, but for the residual fat that seems impossible to budge, or for areas that lack definition, male patients tend to respond well to liposculpture and body implants. acsm