Can Men Manage the Pain from a Breast Reduction with Advil?

My research indicates that there is not much pain after surgery and nothing that Advil or Tylenol with Codine could not handle.

Doctor Answers 11

Discomfort After Male Breast Reduction

The average time for pain pill use after gynecomastia is 2-3 days. Some men do fine without narcotics, but most would prefer them the night of surgery. You will be sore and have fatigue for several weeks. It may be Ok to skip narcotics but do not be afraid to take them as prescribed if you need them.


Seattle Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 100 reviews

Pain after surgery

Pain after gynecomastia surgery lasts a few days.  It is a surface operation.  We are not near any vital organs or nerves, and we stay above the muscle.  Routine oral narcotics is more than enough to combat any pain. 

Tim Neavin, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 13 reviews

Pain after male breast reduction

Most of my patients don't feel too much pain following their procedure, and if they do it is well managed with non-aspirin or non-ibuprofen medications.

Pain management after gynecomastia surgery

There is a lot of variability in pain patterns based on the individual patient. In gynecomastia surgery, I would expect there to be a difference in the degree of pain based on whether the procedure simply involved liposuction or if there was removal of breast tissue with alteration of the nipple-areolar complex. I would not recommend Advil in the post-operative period because anti-inflammatory medications increase the risk of bleeding and bruising. Your plastic surgeon will be able to recommend appropriate pain medication based on the extent of the surgery performed.

Robert L. Kraft, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Pain after breast reduction

Pain is a highly variable and depends on patient to patient.

Many of my patients transition to ibuprofen or Tylenol after 1-2 days of pain medication.  This gives the body time to form stable clots so you would be less likely to bleed.

Typically, my patients do not need a lot of pain medication.  During the procedure, I do use a long-acting numbing agent (local anesthetic) so that the pain for the first day is not so bad.

You may also ask your doctor about pain catheters, little tubes that go in the surgical area and slowly drip numbing medicine into the area to avoid the need for heavy duty pain medicine. Many of my patients opt for this and like the convenience and lack of significant discomfort.

I certainly don't think pain catheters are mandatory. It's simply nice to offer them to patients who I think are going to have a low tolerance for the discomfort of surgery.

I hope this helps.

J. Jason Wendel, MD, FACS
Nashville Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 69 reviews

Pain post gynecomastia surgery

In general, the advil and any other NSAID's should be avoided before and after surgery because they can have an effect on the clotting system and cause bleeding.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 20 reviews

Pain after gynecomastia surgery?

In my experience there is very little pain after my patients have had their gynecomastia surgery. I do use a lot of numbing medicine though.

Advil can cause bleeding.BEWARE

Male breast reduction surgery is usually breast gland excision with liposuction.  The most common complication that i see in my practice is post-op bleeding.  Advil is a blood thinner and will cause bleeding which is very difficult to stop.  It last in the body for almost 2 weeks.  You do not want to take advil before surgery or after for nearly 2 weeks.

Miguel Delgado, MD
San Francisco Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 48 reviews

Avoid Advil Post-op

Although correction of gynecomastia is well tolerated, I discourage the use of anti-inflammatories (advil, motrin, etc) due to the increased risk of bleeding and bruising. Stick with the narcotics (tylenol with codeine, etc) as prescribed.

Brian Klink, MD
Vacaville Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 72 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.