You must have
sufficient tone in the skin and tissues of the arm to be able to have
liposuction alone. If there has been a dramatic weight loss with extra
skin, more than likely you will need to have a arm lift performed.
Who is a
good candidate for brachioplasty surgery?
Any patient who has
had loss of tone in the upper arm. This can either be secondary to weight
loss or significant loss of tone with aging.
Who should not undergo a brachioplasty procedure?
This surgery is not suitable after a mastectomy (breast
breast cancer or operations in the axilla
lymph nodes. Those with multiple infections of the sweat glands may also not be
candidates for brachioplasty. This is because there may be problems with
draining the fluids from your arms as a result of your previous surgery. If you
were to have another operation, your arms could swell very badly and this may be
Patients who are not within 15 percent of their
ideal weight should not be considered,
as brachioplasty is not an option for weight loss. It is best that the
patient be at their target weight first.
How do I prepare for the brachioplasty procedure?
Patients are asked to
stop taking all medications that may increase bleeding including aspiring,
Plavix, NSAIDs (anti-inflammatory medication such as Advil, Aleve, ibuprofen)
and herbal supplements like Vitamin E. Patients also need to be good
general health and should have a full physical before the procedure to make sure
their blood pressure is controlled.
Patients need to
refrain from smoking - as the nicotine in tobacco products decreases the oxygen
that is carried in your blood flow to your skin to help heal the surgical
incision. Patients who smoke have delayed healing and increased wound
Depending on the actual type of brachioplasty
that will be performed - the scar is normally placed inside the inner side
of the upper arm - beginning at the axillary area (underarm) to the elbow).
If a limited or a mini brachioplasty is indicted, the scar will be much shorter.
All surgery requires a scar and all scars take time to soften and fade. The
final appearance of the scar will not be seen for at least a year or two after
surgery. In the beginning, the scar may appear red and raised for the
first few months following the surgery.
Are drains going to be used with the brachioplasty?
Drains are sometimes are used after this type of
Drains are used for two reasons:
One is to remove
fluid such as serum or blood that would otherwise collect under the skin.
The other reason
is to pull the skin against the underlying tissue to allow it to stick in
If you have drains when you leave the surgery
center you will be given instructions on their care before you go home
Brachioplasty scars tend to be some of the more noticeable scars
left after cosmetic plastic surgery. The scars tend to widen and
stay more red than typical scars. Still many patients find this
an acceptable trade-off in order to rid themselves of all the
Approximately one to two weeks are necessary to
resume daily activities, and approximately four to six weeks (sometimes longer) to resume most
Will my arms
start to sag again?
Generally not, but with substantial weight gains
and losses, there could be a partial recurrence of laxity to the area.
Can I use Arnica Montana
for swelling and bruising?
Arnica is a perennial herb that has been used in
other countries (such as Europe) to help with bruising and swelling.
Arnica has proven that it
can decrease the healing time.
There are many different
types of Arnica Montana that you can take.
Arnica should never
be taken in it's raw form as it can cause intestinal
bleeding, abdominal cramps and sickness.
Make sure you ask your
plastic surgeon first before taking this
Can I use bromelain for
swelling and bruising?
Bromelain comes from the pineapple plant, in
which it contains anti-inflammatory properties with an enzyme that aids in the
process of digestion of protein. Originally used after sports injuries
or in arthritis to help relieve edema and also used after surgical procedures to
help reduce swelling.
Patients taking any kind of blood thinner or
anticoagulant such as aspirin, warfin (Coumadin) heparin, non-steroidal
anti-inflammatory medications like Advil, Motrin, Naproxyn, Aleve - should only
take bromelain under a physician's care. Make sure you ask your plastic
surgeon first before using this after surgery.