Arm lift Also known as brachioplasty is a surgical procedure that addresses sagging, droopy arms caused by factors such as ageing, weight loss, and heredity and gives a rejuvenated appearance. Removing the excess skin caused by weight loss or natural aging can tighten loose skin that extends from the underarm area to the elbow. Liposuction is sometimes used in combination to achieve the best results.
When to Consider an Arm Lift
. If your weight is normal, but you feel your shape is marred by underarm laxity.
. If you have lost a massive amount of weight and are left with excess upper-arm skin and fat that may resemble bat wings.
. If you are willing to accept a scar in exchange for shapelier arms.
How do I prepare for an arm lift procedure?
Your surgeon will provide thorough preoperative instructions, answer any questions you may have, take a detailed medical history and perform a physical exam to determine your fitness for surgery.
In advance of your procedure, your surgeon may ask you to:
. Stop smoking before undergoing surgery to promote better healing.
. Avoid taking aspirin, certain anti-inflammatory drugs and some herbal medications that can cause increased bleeding.
. Be hydrated - regardless of the type of surgery to be performed, hydration is very important before and after surgery for safe recovery.
. Lose weight or make some lifestyle changes, do your best to achieve them to ensure the best results and minimize the chance of complications.
For the easiest recovery period, prepare carefully:
. Have many pillows on hand. Elevating your arms with pillows can help reduce swelling and increase comfort during recovery.
. Stock your refrigerator with lots of fruits and vegetables and lean proteins. Lean protein assists in healing. Salt increases swelling, so avoid it! Prepare frozen meals in advance. High-protein, low-sodium soft foods are best for the first couple of days.
. Decide what you will wear for the day of surgery and the first few postoperative days; pick items that open in front and do not have to be pulled over your head. Wear slip-on shoes.
. Plan where you will recuperate. If possible, have a speakerphone by your bed and a remote control for the TV.
. Schedule time off from work, approximately one week, or two weeks if your job is labor intensive.
. Tend to all of your chores before your surgery, so you don’t have to worry about doing chores during your recuperation. You will not be allowed to engage in heavy lifting for several weeks after surgery.
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. Most upper arm lift procedures take at least one to three hours to complete but may take longer.
. Wear comfortable, loose clothing the day of surgery. It is helpful to wear soft tops that open in front and roomy sweat pants.
. You will receive medications to keep you comfortable during the surgical procedure.
. For your safety during the operation, various monitors will check your heart, blood pressure, pulse and the amount of oxygen circulating in your blood.
. After your procedure is completed, you will be taken into a recovery area, where you will continue to be closely monitored.
When you wake up, you may find the following:
. Surgical drains have been placed to remove fluid that accumulates within the incisions.
. A sterile dressing has been applied to the incisions and a compression garment or bandage supports your arms to promote healing and decrease postoperative swelling and bruising.
. You will likely have your arms wrapped from the wrist to the armpit for the first 72 hours.
. Before leaving for home, you (or someone looking after you) should feel comfortable emptying and resetting your drains.
You may go home on the day of surgery or spend a night in the hospital or an aftercare center with a nurse, unless you and your surgeon have decided on other postoperative recovery options. Under no circumstances will you be permitted to go home alone or stay home without another adult present for the first 24 to 48 hours. Follow your doctor’s recommendation in relation to this decision.
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Who are the ideal Candidates for Arm Lift?
. Healthy Individuals who do not have any medical conditions that might inhibit fast healing such as high BP, High Cholesterol, Diabetes etc., and those who do not have a weak immune system.
. Adults who have significant loose skin folds over the arm.
. You have lost the weight you desire, but are left with redundant underarm skin.
. Adults who show relative stability in weight and are not very obese. This is why the procedure is not performed on children as they show fluctuations in weight during growth.
. People who are ready to maintain the skin tone and amount of fat under the skin after the surgery by a continuous exercise regimen, as not doing so might lead to unwanted fat deposits in other places.
. You are a nonsmoker.
. You are an adult with significant upper arm skin laxity due to aging.
. You are at a stable weight and have a BMI of less than 30 – 32
. You are Realistic with your expectations
Who should avoid undergoing Arm Lift?
There are certain candidates who should not undergo this procedure, these are:
. Individuals with tight skin of the upper arm are not always suited as the procedure requires stretching the skin.
. Individuals who are overweight (30 pounds above the ideal weight according to BMI) are not ideal as future weight loss can cause loose skin again.
. If the individual can reduce arm size through natural weight loss, they should avoid surgery.
. Individuals who have a tendency to scar or recover slowly from an injury. The scars can take a while to fade.
. Individuals allergic to anesthesia, which will be administered during the procedure.
. Individuals who are chronic smokers and drinkers and cannot quit smoking for at least 2 weeks before the surgery. Nicotine and alcohol slows recovery and leads to avoidable bleeding.
. Individuals with serious medical conditions such as anemia. It can hamper the healing process and might cause further complications.
What are the Advantages and Disadvantages of an Arm Lift?
. If the arm’s skin has become saggy and droopy, it is advisable for the patient to undergo an arm lift procedure rather than liposuction as an arm lift helps in tightening of the skin.
. A benefit of arm lift is that it yields fast and substantial results.
. The procedure removes excess skin from the arms and giving you the desired look of the arms.
. As there is removal of the skin around the arms, the arms feel lighter and firmer giving a youthful look to the body.
. Accumulation of fat due to various reasons such as heredity problem, lack of exercise, unsuccessful diet results can be treated with the cosmetic procedure.
. The arm lift procedure gives the body a toned appearance which may have a positive impact on the state of mind of the patient.
. Visible scars will be seen along the insides of your arms, extending from the armpit to the elbow. With technological advancements in the procedures these scars can be reduced.
. Swelling is a side effect of the surgery. This can be minimised by using supportive wraps after the surgery.
. Postoperative care becomes very important for the patient as there might be risks of development of blood clots, if the patient does not walk on a frequent basis.
. The surgery can be posed with various risks such as scarring, bruising etc., which the patient can avoid by following the preoperative and postoperative instructions advised by the doctors.
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