Arm Lift

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An arm lift, also known as brachioplasty, is a surgical procedure to remove loose skin and excess fat deposits in the upper arm. With age, upper arm skin can become loose and flabby. Plastic surgeons will discuss brachioplasty with patients who want to tighten this skin and look as good as they feel. In some cases your plastic surgeon may suggest that liposuction be used alone or in conjunction with an arm lift to remove excess fat in the upper arms.

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Is Liposuction an Option?

Not if your problem is due to loose skin. The only time lipo is a better choice is when there is a lot of fat and the skin is tight. When the skin is loose, an arm lift is usually the best choice.

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Incisions and Scars in Arm Lift

Scars are the greatest drawback of this operation. They will extend from the armpit to the elbow, along the inside of the arm. This operation exchanges one cosmetic problem (loose skin) for another (scars). In general, those with very loose saggy skin are most likely to find this exchange worthwhile. Those with a small amount of looseness will probably not want the scars

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Arm Lift: During and After Surgery

Anesthesia: General or sedation.
Location of operation: Office or hospital.
Length of surgery: 1-2 hours
Length of stay: Outpatient (home same day).
Discomfort: Mild to moderate. Anticipate 2-5 days of prescription pain medication.
Swelling: Improves over 14 days.
Bruising: Is rare
Bandages: Will be removed in 1-7 days.
Stitches: Will be absorbable.
Back to work: 3-7 days.
Exercise: May be resumed in 2 weeks.
Final result: Will be seen after the scars have matured, which will be about six months.

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Tips and Traps of Arm Lift

Realize that this operation involves the exchange of one cosmetic problem (loose skin) for another (scars). If you are unwilling to accept scars, you should not have this operation, as no surgeon can predict how the scars will heal on you.

Arm lift is for loose skin. If your main problem is heavy arms due to excess fat, then lipo may be a better option.