Working out After Male Breast Reduction Surgery

When can I start working out my chest again after male breast reduction surgery?

Doctor Answers 25

Work out 3 weeks after male breast reduction.


1)  In New York City, we tell our male breast reduction patients to keep their arms by their sides for one week.  They can exercise freely in 3 weeks.

2)  Don't overdo it with the pecs, or your chest will bulge out .  You had the surgery to get rid of that appearance.

Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

Working out After Male Breast Reduction Surgery

After male breast reduction or gynecomastia surgery, the chest needs time to heal and for the tissues to fuse back together. As a result, I usually recommend four weeks of no exercise, two more weeks after that of light lower body non-impact exercise and then easing back into regular exercise starting at six weeks. I would not pursue excessive chest exercise for the first six weeks after surgery and after that time, I would ease into the exercises slowly and carefully ensuring the chest is not particularly sore as long as you are cautious, use your body as a guide and take care during that first 4-6 week period not to injure the surgical sites.

Robert Cohen, MD
Phoenix Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 31 reviews

Working Out After Gynecomastia Surgery

Thank you for your post. As you can see by colleagues' answers there is no right or wrong answer to this question. Every surgeon has their own timeline that works for them in their practice. In my practice I typically allow my patients to resume exercise in 3 to 6 weeks depending on the procedure performed. The main take home message is that you do not want to exercise too soon as this may increase swelling and delay the results.


Dr. Dadvand

Babak Dadvand, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 27 reviews

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Exercise after gynecomastia surgery

It is a good idea to wait at least 3 weeks before a strenuous work-out.  The skin must adhere to chest wall, and exercise which increases blood pressure and heart rate may cause fluid to build up in this space.  Stay wrapped, and be patient.  3 weeks is a good number.

Tim Neavin, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 22 reviews

Exercise after surgery

I suggest you wait about a month or so before you start working out again. However, you should ask your surgeon.

Working out After Male Breast Reduction Surgery

Recommendations for resumption of exercise after gynecomastia reduction surgery vary from surgeon to surgeon.  In my practice, I recommend waiting for 8 weeks to allow for ample recovery time.  Good luck and be safe.

John T. Nguyen, MD, FACS, FICS
Double Board Certified Plastic Surgeon

John Nguyen, MD, FACS
Houston Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 45 reviews

It really depends on the particular type of Male Breast Reduction surgery that is done:

It really depends on the particular type of Male Breast Reduction surgery that is done:

Liposuction Alone: 2 weeks of no straining or heavy lifting in order to minimize the chance for blood collections;  4 weeks of a “compression vest” is usually adequate to treat post-op swelling.

Gland Excision Alone:  a bulky dressing with some compression for 7 to 10 days;  no strenuous activity or extreme motion of the chest muscles for 3 weeks to allow for proper healing of the tissues.

Liposuction and Gland Excision: a bulky gauze dressing for 7 days along with a compression vest for 4 weeks.   2 weeks of no straining or heavy lifting and no strenuous activity or extreme motion of the chest muscles for 3 weeks to allow for proper healing of the tissues.

Full Breast Reduction: Mild compression with ace wraps and a bulky gauze dressing is worn one week.  If a free nipple graft is done, a compressive “tie-over” dressing is applied over the graft and is left for 7-10 days until the graft “takes”.  No strenuous activity or extreme motion of the chest muscles for 3 weeks to allow for proper healing of the tissues.

Exercising Following Gynecomastia Surgery

                  It’s not uncommon for patients with gynecomastia to be concerned about when they can resume their normal workout routine. This varies depending on the type of surgical procedure performed.

                  Each case needs to be considered individually since no two cases are the same. In the vast majority of patients, weight lifting and strenuous activities should be avoided for four to six weeks following surgery.

                  When gynecomastia is treated with liposuction, patients are frequently able to resume their normal work outs sooner than with excisional treatments.

                  It’s important to discuss this issue with your surgeon before resuming these types of activities. It’s important to remember that premature resumption of strenuous physical activities may be associated with significant complications. 

Working out after gynecomastia surgery

A large number of patients in my practice engage in bodybuilding or other vigorous exercise programs, and the majority of those individuals might be considered exercise "junkies," a trait I share with them.  As a result, I work closely with my patients to get them back into their exercise program quickly following surgery.  They are advised to take the first week off completely, but I allow them to resume cardio after a week.  I suggest low impact exercise, and I recommend that they start slowly and work up to a more normal level by the end of the second week. Presuming they have no other issues, I allow them to start resistance training after two weeks, minimizing overhead activities and avoiding all direct chest training for a total of four weeks.  They can resume chest training after four weeks, and most patients are nearly back to normal after six to eight weeks.  Following this regimen, I have had no patients with late complications such as wound problems, bleeding, or fluid collection. 


Although this is my approach, all patients should consult with their own surgeon before engaging in any exercise activity post-operatively. 

Richard Silverman, MD
Newton Plastic Surgeon
3.5 out of 5 stars 6 reviews

Exercise after gynecomastia surgery

The length of time you need to wait before working out would be dependent on the type of procedure performed. Generally, I would permit patients to return to the gym to work out their lower bodies about 3 weeks postoperatively but would recommend abstaining from weight lifting or upper body exercises for another few weeks and, then, using the compression garment for support. You should follow the recommendation of your operating surgeon and begin with lower impact exercise and then build up to a more strenuous regimen.

Robert L. Kraft, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 18 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.