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How Long Does the Brachioplasty Recovery Process Typically Take?

Brachioplasty or “arm lift’ is a common, usually outpatient procedure that generally will drastically improve the appearance of the under portion of your upper arms.

This procedure is commonly done by removing the excess skin and fat between the armpit and elbow of your arm. The remaining skin is adjusted and repositioned and will create a more toned, youthful appearance on the underside of your arm.

It’s quite common that as you age, the skin on your upper arms “loosens” and will begin sagging and become “flabby” in appearance. Commonly, any significant weight loss will cause the undersides of your upper arms to droop and appear “loose” or “saggy.”

Admittedly, all patients differ, but with any surgical procedure, no matter how common or successful, there is always a recovery period after your surgery is complete. Depending on your overall skin health, you may expect a full recovery in approximately two to three weeks.

During this “recovery period,” it is wise to have a friend or family member drive you home following your procedure. Driving within 24 hours of receiving sedation or anesthesia is not advised.

Also, you should expect to be able to drive anywhere for up to 10 days after the Brachioplasty. Usually, you may take pain meds; they typically cause grogginess and slow your reaction times.

If your career involves a sedentary job, you can probably return to work about a week after your “arm lift” procedure. If your occupation is physically demanding, however, you should expect to take around two weeks off from work after your Brachioplasty. Also, you must note that you should not do anything during the first week after your procedure that will elevate your blood pressure.

During any recovery process, the most important thing to do is follow your Boston cosmetic surgeon’s post-op instructions to the letter!

You will likely see some initial results soon after your surgery, but most will be temporarily disguised by swelling. Commonly though, in about six weeks after the Brachioplasty, your swelling will have subsided, and you will be able to see the results, more pleasing aesthetic, and overall shape of your upper arm.

Exactly What Might I Expect Right After my Brachioplasty?

Right after your surgery, applying dressings or bandages to your incisions is common. Your arms also usually are wrapped in an elastic bandage (or “compression garment”) to minimize any swelling. In specific and rarer cases, a small, thin tube may be temporarily placed under your skin to drain any excess fluid.

Your surgical team will tutor you in specific post-op instructions on properly caring for your surgical site, drains, and anything else they may deem appropriate.

Medications may also be prescribed or taken orally to minimize discomfort and aid healing.

You must note that you (or a family member) should discuss all specific concerns you might want to know. Your Boston or Wellesley surgical team is there to assist you from the beginning to the very end of your procedure. They want the best results possible, with the most minor discomfort and rapid recovery time possible.

After all is done, and before you head home, a follow-up visit with your plastic surgeon will be scheduled.

Is There Any Way to Determine If a Brachioplasty is “Right” For Me?

The simple and most direct answer is, yes, there is.

Usually, the following facts may help you and your cosmetic surgeon make this decision:

  • Are you a healthy individual who does not have any medical conditions that could inhibit fast healing and does not have a weak immune system?
  • Are you an adult with significant and noticeable loose skin folds over your arm?
  • Are you relatively stable in your weight and not overly obese?
  • Importantly, are you determined to maintain the skin tone and amount of fat under the skin after surgery and follow an exercise regimen? If you don’t diligently do this, it might lead to unwanted fat deposits in other places.

This is only a partial list, but having a detailed and thorough discussion with your cosmetic surgeon, all your questions and concerns will be answered and help put your mind at ease.

How Would I Usually Prepare For My Brachioplasty?

First, is the skin under your upper arm “loose” and less attractive than you wish it would be? If so, it’s wise to consult your experienced Boston or Wellesley cosmetic surgeon about moving forward with your “arm lift” procedure.

During your initial Brachioplasty consultation, your plastic surgeon will likely:

  • Review your complete and comprehensive medical history.
  • Do an in-depth physical exam.
  • And very importantly, thoroughly discuss your expectations for this procedure, what you expect it to accomplish, and the improvements you wish to receive.

Your surgeon and his team perform this procedure to help mold the body you wish for. They will always advise you with empathy and professionalism; take full advantage of their recommendations.

I Do Sincerely Want To Improve The Look Of My Upper Arms; How Should I Proceed?

First, any type of surgery has risk factors. Brachioplasty procedures are common, and almost always successful, and their final effect is to give your arms a more youthful and attractive appearance.

If you are a suitable candidate for a Brachioplasty is a question only you and your Boston Brachioplasty surgeon can determine.

The cosmetic surgeon and the professional team you choose should be experienced in performing this procedure. Make sure you are comfortable also, consult with them now, and be sure that you are medically, realistically, and emotionally confident about moving forward with your surgery. They will stop at nothing to ensure it is professionally performed and end up with the body shape and pleasing aesthetic look you are hoping for.

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