The back of the arms are exceptionally difficult to firm and tone. Despite increasing your upper-body strength, you may still have sagging skin that detracts from your otherwise fit appearance. If you’re tired of lifting weights without seeing results, contact Dr. Steven Carp to find out if an arm lift is right for you. His Green and Beachwood, OH offices gladly accepts patients from throughout the Canton, Cleveland and Akron areas.
Are your upper arms not as tight and toned as they used to be? One or more factors such as aging, heredity, and even changes in your weight can cause them to have a batwing-like appearance. Strength training can improve the underlying muscle tone of the upper arm but cannot restore the elasticity of excess skin, strengthen weak underlying tissues, or eliminate localized fat deposits. As a result, you may be self-conscious about wearing sleeveless tops. If you’ve developed droopy, sagging, or lumpy arms, you may be a good candidate for an arm lift.
What Is an Arm Lift?
An arm lift is a surgical procedure performed to create a more proportionate appearance to the underside of the upper arms. After the procedure, many patients experience a boost in their self-esteem and are able to wear sleeveless tops with more comfort and confidence. An arm lift can achieve the following goals for the patient:
- Minimizes excess sagging skin that hangs downward when arms are extended away from the body.
- Tightens and evens out the underlying supportive tissue that defines the shape of the upper arm.
- Minimizes any localized pockets of fat in the upper arm region through brachioplasty, commonly performed in conjunction with liposuction techniques.
The conditions treated with an arm lift may develop in both men and women, most often due to a loss of elasticity in the skin and underlying tissues of the upper arm. This may be the result of extreme weight loss where the skin has been so stretched it loses the ability to retract. Conditions may also result from the natural changes that occur with aging, heredity, or a combination of the two.
A noteworthy thing to keep in mind is that an arm lift cannot correct weakened muscles of the upper arm. Many individuals who seek surgery are relatively fit people who are bothered by a condition that cannot be corrected through toning exercises. In general, good candidates for an arm lift are as follows:
- Adults of any age whose weight is relatively stable and who are not morbidly obese.
- Healthy individuals who do not have medical conditions that can impair healing or increase surgery-related risks.
- Individuals with a positive outlook and who understand what an arm lift can realistically do for their appearance.
- Individuals committed to living a healthy lifestyle, eating nutritional food, and following some type of fitness program.
Where Do I Begin?
A consultation with Dr. Carp is the first step in learning what he can do to help you achieve a smoother, contour of the arm by undergoing a brachioplasty in a relaxed environment and will include a discussion of the following:
- Your goals and individual case evaluation
- Available options for an arm lift
- The likely outcomes of brachioplasty and associated risks or potential complications
- The course of treatment recommended by Dr. Carp
Arm Lift Evaluation
Overall health and personal outlook can greatly impact the outcome of arm lift surgery. These will be carefully evaluated in a consultation with Dr. Carp. The success, safety, and overall satisfaction of your procedure require that you do the following:
- Candidly share your expectations
- Fully disclose your health history, current medications, and the use of vitamins, herbal supplements, alcohol, tobacco, and drugs
- Comply with all of Dr. Carp’s instructions before and after surgery
Your Arm Lift
The procedure begins with an incision placed on the inside of the upper arm, which may extend from the underarm to the elbow or be shorter in length. Incision length and pattern depend on the amount and location of excess skin to be removed, as well as the surgical judgment and preferred technique of Dr. Carp. The underlying supportive tissues are tightened and reshaped with internal sutures. The overlying skin is then smoothed over the new contour of your arm. Your incisions will be closed with absorbable sutures or stitches that will be removed within one to two weeks following your arm lift.
Preparing for An Arm Lift
Dr. Carp will carefully explain the technique for your arm lift. Prior to any surgery, you will be given specific instructions that may include the following:
- Diagnostic testing and medications
- Instructions and medications on the day of surgery
- Specific information related to the use of anesthesia
- Postoperative care and follow-up
What to Expect from an Arm Lift
Brachioplasty surgery is an outpatient procedure done under a general or local anesthetic. The average time to perform this procedure is a little over two hours for the administering of anesthesia and initial recovery time. Brachioplasty surgery can also be performed along with a liposuction procedure if the patient and the surgeon have agreed that dual surgical procedures will bring optimal results.
Following an Arm Lift
Once your procedure is completed, your incisions will be covered with dressings or bandages. Your arms may be wrapped in an elastic bandage to minimize swelling and support the new shape of your arms as you heal. Small, thin drainage tubes may be temporarily placed underneath the skin to remove the excess fluid or blood. Before you are released, you and a designated family member, friend, or caregiver will be given specific instructions that may include the following:
- How to care for the surgical site and drains
- Topical or oral medications to use to aid healing and reduce possible infection
- Specific signs to look for at the surgical site or health symptoms to be aware of
- When to follow up with Dr. Carp
How Much Does an Arm Lift Cost?
An arm lift is considered to be elective, so most insurance providers won’t cover the costs. To help make arm lifts affordable and accessible for everyone, Carp Cosmetic Surgery Center offers financing options. We also accept cash, personal checks, and major credit cards.
Progress and Healing
Expect your arms to be swollen and bruised and to experience some discomfort following your arm lift. Discomfort after surgery can be controlled with medication. Dr. Carp will instruct you to keep your arms elevated for several days following surgery. Resume light walking as soon as possible to minimize the potential for blood clots and other complications. Avoid lifting or bearing any weight on your arms for several weeks, and limit your range of motion until internal healing is complete. Within a few days, you will be ready to return to work and may perform light, normal activities as long as it does not involve any lifting or vigorous exercise.
Your incisions will heal within one to two weeks, after which time your sutures will be removed if necessary. Additional healing will continue for the weeks to follow as your arm’s swelling goes down and incision lines continue to improve. In addition, numbness and a tight feeling over the skin’s surface will gradually decrease over time.
It is important to diligently protect your arms from sun exposure until the healing process is completed; otherwise, you may notice irregular pigmentation and scars, or the treated area may become raised, red, or dark. The scars from your incision lines may take a year or more to flatten and fade.
Continue to follow Dr. Carp’s instructions and attend follow-up visits as scheduled. If you follow the steps recommended by Dr. Carp after your procedure, you can increase your chance of making a full recovery and achieving more proportional, toned arms.
Results and Outlook
Both men and women usually choose to get an arm lift when diet and exercise fail to give them the sculpted, toned arms they desire. Like any other type of cosmetic procedure, there are a few post-surgical risks that may occur. However, these risks can be reduced if you follow all of Dr. Carp’s recommended instructions. The dramatic improvement in arm contour following arm lift surgery can greatly enhance your body image. As your body ages, it is natural to lose some firmness, but most of your improvement should remain. The results of an arm lift will be long-lasting, provided that you maintain a stable weight and general fitness level.
An arm lift performed by Dr. Steven Carp of Carp Cosmetic Surgery Center might provide you with just the boost of confidence you need. Patients from Canton, Cleveland, Akron, Green or Beachwood, OH, may contact the clinics at any time to schedule a consultation.