Over time, and especially when too much weight is lost, the skin of the arms begins to sag and they become anaesthetic. An arm lift or brachioplasty is used to remove the excess skin of the arms and give them back they firmness.
It removes the excess skin and fat that appears on the triceps area as a result of aging or when too much weight is lost. If your upper arms are sagging and wearing sleeveless clothes makes you feel uncomfortable, an arm lift could be the best option. The resulting scar will be a straight line that will be visible in the inner side of the arm, but most people prefer to have this line than flaccidity.
When the fat deposits are small and the skin has good elasticity, liposuction is a more adequate treatment than this one.
Local anesthesia with sedation or general anesthesia.
How long will it take?
About 2 hours.
How is an arm lift performed?
The surgeon makes an incision along the inner arm, from the elbow to the armpit. He trims the excess skin and fat. He places drainage tubes (if necessary) and closes the incisions with stitches.
How long will I have to stay hospitalized?
There is not need to be hospitalized.
What kind of bandages will I need, when will they be removed?
You will wear a compression bandage around your arms for a week. This will reduce the swelling and aid the healing process. You may also have a flexible drainage tube in each arm. They reduce the incidence of bruises, since they drain off excess fluids from the wounds to an airtight plastic bottle.
Will I feel a lot of pain?
Mild to moderate. You will be greatly relieved if you take pain relievers every 6 or 8 hours.
When will the stitches be removed?
Between one and two weeks after the surgery.
What about swelling and bruises?
They are not too significant and they tend to subside in two or three weeks.
What will the scars look like?
We would like to tell you that this surgery is one of those surgeries that leave no scarsâ€¦ but this isnâ€™t the case. The resulting scar will be along the inner arm, from the elbow to the armpit. The incision is done there because itâ€™s the least visible place. The scar will turn from reddish to pale pink, and then it will have the color of the rest of your skin; this may take from 6 to 18 months.
You may go back to work about a week after the surgery, if it is a sedentary one. If it is not and you have to lift heavy objects or if it involves physical activities, you will have to wait between two or four more weeks.
The first weeks after the surgery tend to be long and unpleasant. During this period, some people may feel quite depressed. Itâ€™s quite normal to feel this way after any kind of surgery, no matter how simple it may be. You may even come to think that you made a big mistake. But donâ€™t worry. Most of the people who are happy today and who are satisfied with the results obtained, have also felt somewhat depressed.
Every surgery, no matter how simple it may be, has certain risks, and we should not rule them out. However, it is very unlikely for an arm lift to present any complications when performed by a qualified surgeon. Some of the most frequent complications are:
Your arms will be firmer for a long time, since the results of an arm lift are permanent. Most of the patients are satisfied with the results obtained. All in all, they consider that their arms look much better after the surgery, in spite of the scars.