December 15th, 2011 Miguel A. Delgado Jr, MD
A compression vest is essential in the healing of the chest after male breast reduction surgery for the man who suffers with moobs (gynecomastia). The purposes of the vest include:
• Reduces swelling
• Stops tissue from oozing excess fluid
• Helps the chest tissues to properly bind together
The vest applies gentle pressure to keep tissue from moving as it heals, it is important the the vest is snug but not tight so it does not interrupt blood flow. The excision of the gland leaves a “dead space”, to collapse it drains are used to cause a negative internal pressure and remove fluid. Once the drains have been removed the vest can be removed only to shower. The vest is to be worn 24/7 for six weeks. The patient may wear a t-shirt under the vest for comfort. At the six week point when the vest is removed, then the gynecomastia surgery patient is able to resume all normal activities.
Many San Francisco Bay Area patients are concerned about wearing the vest, and while it is somewhat cumbersome, it does not show under regular clothing and the advantages it gives far outweigh the temporary minor discomfort.