What is Brachioplasty or Arm Lift?
Elasticity of the skin unavoidably diminishes with age. As the layers of muscle and skin become thinner, the upper arms lose their firmness. Age and sudden weight-loss can often be the cause of drooping or flaccid upper arms. Arm Lift is a great way to get rid of excess arm fat and loosened skin. Also known as brachioplasty surgery, this procedure is designed to remove loose flabby arm skin and to reshape your arm, resulting in a more proportionate appearance.
There are three different types of brachioplasty:
- The first is a limited incision brachioplasty, also known as a mini brachioplasty. This is for clients with only a small amount of skin/fat excess just below the underarm area. The scar in this case would be located in the underarm area.
- The second, and most common, is a standard brachioplasty. This procedure is best for clients that have loose, sagging skin from the underarm down to the elbow. The scar, in this type, is located on the inside of the arm, starting from the underarm to just above the elbow.
- The last type is the extended brachioplasty. The scar is similar to the standard brachioplasty but the incision (and scar) is carried onto the lateral chest wall to address loose, excess skin on the side of the chest/underarm. This is usually the type of brachioplasty performed in massive weight loss clients.
Liposuction is almost always carried out prior to the arm lift, in order to eliminate the fatty tissue. In clients that have good skin elasticity, liposuction can be performed alone with good results. In an arm lift surgery, the incisions are invariably made along the inner arm up to the armpit. The skin is separated from the underlying fat and muscle. Excess skin is thereafter gently removed.
Smoking should be stopped two months prior to the operation. Any on-going medication or sedation that can cause post-operative bleeding should be discontinued at least two weeks before the surgery if permitted by the prescribing physician.
Where the duration of the surgery depends on the amount of skin to be removed, it generally, doesn’t take more than an hour for the whole surgery to complete and it doesn’t require an overnight stay of the patient in the clinic or the hospital.
Arm Lift procedure is carried out under mild/local anaesthesia.
- Along with surgical drains for bleeding and excess fluid, the patient will also have compression wraps around operated arms.
- The arms should be kept as much elevated as possible to control the swelling.
- The prescription should be dedicatedly followed to avoid any infection or side effects.
- The follow-up appointments should also be religiously followed and during an appointment, the surgical drains are removed.
- The stitches are dissolved with time and they do not need to be manually removed.
- Light duty and work can be resumed in two weeks time, however, the full activity and exercise should not be resumed before six weeks of the surgery.
- Complications can include post-operative bleeding, infection, wound healing problems, or the fluid collection in the upper arm. A little bit of sensation can also be there at the surgery spot.
- The scar is inevitable if you want the contouring. However, with proper cosmetic surgery, the scar can also be removed easily.
The results of an arm lift are usually outstanding, even if the scarring on the inner part of the arm (arm pit) remains visible. Thereafter, patients can enjoy wearing sleeveless tops and overall feel much more confident about their arms and upper body than before the procedure.