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Arm lift, also known as brachioplasty, is a surgical procedure designed to remove excess skin and tissue from the upper arm area. As people age, the skin of the arm loses its elasticity and begins to sag. This condition is especially severe in people who have lost a large amount of weight due to a weight loss surgery or other means. However, arm flab can be present in thin people as well, including those who watch their diet and exercise regularly. Arm lift may be performed on its own or in combination with liposuction. When performed by renowned St. Paul / Minneapolis arm lift surgeon Dr. Fasching, this procedure can help patients regain their svelte figure.
The arm lift procedure performed by Dr. Fasching takes from one to three hours and is performed under general anesthesia or local anesthesia with sedation. The placement of the incision depends on the extent of the excess tissue being removed. Patients with relatively little excess fat and skin may qualify for a minimal incision arm lift, in which the incision is limited to the area where the upper arm meets the armpit. For more extensive surgeries, the incision may start near the elbow, run along the back or side of the arm and end at the underarm. For those who require even more tissue removal, the incision may extend to the side of the chest. After the incision is made, Dr. Fasching uses liposuction to remove fat, then trims and tightens the skin, closing the incision with stitches or absorbable sutures.
Following surgery, Dr. Fasching will apply dressings to the incisions and provide a compression garment to minimize swelling. Patients will experience some swelling and bruising in the first few days following surgery, but most swelling should subside within two weeks. Patients will be advised to keep their arms elevated as much as possible to help prevent swelling. Most patients are able to shower one week following surgery, return to work after two weeks and resume strenuous exercise in one month, although heavy lifting should be avoided for six weeks. Like all surgeries, arm lift carries risks, including infection, hematoma and loss of sensation. However, such risks can be minimized by carefully following the post-operative instructions provided by Dr. Fasching.