Before & After
46 y/o female that had 190 lbs of weight loss and was unhappy with the appearance of her upper arms. She is shown here about 9 months after brachioplasty surgery of her upper arms with extension of the excision onto her sides.
This is best suited for women and men who have loose upper arm skin that hangs in an unattractive appearance. Frequently this is the result of a large amount of weight loss and is termed “bat wings” by many people but can also occur when the skin just loses its elasticity. Liposuction alone can frequently take care of excess fat in the upper arm but will not address the loose skin. The procedure involves excising the excess skin and fat on the arm from the axilla (arm pit) out to the elbow. The trade off however is the scar that is left in the area that can be hard to hide. A few people can also have this done with just an incision in the axillary region, but not many. Some patients will even have the excision extended down their side to excise loose skin in the case of a large amount of weight loss.
A personal consultation is the first step for every patient considering brachioplasty surgery. During this meeting, I will assess your physical and emotional health and discuss your specific cosmetic goals for the procedure. The quality of your skin as well as amount of excess fat will be assessed at your initial consultation. This exam will allow me to determine if you just need liposuction alone, limited incision brachioplasty (axillary incision only) or a normal brachioplasty (incision out to the elbow).
Before going into the operating room you will be marked for incisions and areas for liposuction in the standing position. You then go to the operating room and are placed under a general anesthetic. Incisions are then made along the anterior markings made in the holding area. The area marked for excision is slowly freed from the underlying tissues and carefully checked for tension before the final excision to help ensure that the wound can be closed without stress. I usually close with dissolving sutures. Dressings are then placed and you are brought out to the recovery room.
After your surgery you will spend around a hour in the recovery room then be discharged home. You will have prescriptions for pain pills and an antibiotic. You can expect some swelling to occur initially.
You may remove your dressing and shower today. There will be strips of tape over your incision that you should leave in place. Take it easy and try to keep your arms propped up on pillows beside you when you are resting.
Your swelling will slowly get better with discomfort gradually improving. You may gradually increase your activity. You will be asked to come to the office about 7 days after your surgery.
Most people would feel like returning to a desk job after 1 week. You can gradually increase your activity as you tolerate. Just take it easy though. You will be asked to come back to the office about 2 weeks from your last visit for a follow-up visit.
Most people are well healed at this time. There will be a small amount of swelling still present however. After this visit you will have no restrictions.
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