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An upper arm lift procedure, or brachioplasty is intended to, improve the appearance of the arms by removing excess skin and fat. Arm lifts can be combined with liposuction to reshape the arms.
According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, there were 16,205 upper arm lift procedure performed in 2014.
Choosing an Upper Arm Lift Procedure
The number of upper arm lift procedures has increased over 4,400% in the last decade, largely due to the increasing number of weight reduction procedures like brachioplasty. Patients may choose an upper arm lift procedure if they want to:
- Reduce excess skin and fat around the upper arm
- Make arms more proportional to body after major weight loss
- Lift the skin around the arms and appear more youthful
Upper arm lifts are not intended to cause major weight loss. Instead, they are an effective procedure to re-model the arms after major weight loss. Patients should have stable body weight before considering an upper arm lift procedure.
It should be noted that upper arm lifts come with a significant and, visible scars that usually run between the armpit and the elbow. Patients can choose from other less dramatic procedures or they can choose between different under arm lift techniques to find a procedure that best meets their needs.
According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, arm lift procedures cost an average of $3,936 in 2014, but this figure does not include hospital fees. Patients will have to pay for these procedures out of pocket because most insurance companies will not cover elective plastic surgeries.
Understanding the Upper Arm Lift Procedure
Upper arm lifts can be performed using a number of different techniques. Patients should talk to their doctors about what they want to achieve in order to select the best possible surgical technique.
Before any upper arm lift procedure, patients will usually be sedated with general anesthesia. Prior to sedation, surgeons will draw markings on the patient to define the extent of the procedure.
There are three main options for upper arm procedures: limited incision, standard, and extended. Limited incision procedures are used when the patient has a lot of excess skin that is close to the armpit and a limited amount of fat in the arms. The procedure is performed by lifting and tucking excess skin into the armpit to hide scars. This does not work if the patient has an excess of fatty tissue.
A standard upper arm lift is performed by removing a strip of excess skin from the entire upper arm, and by lifting and tightening the skin to close the incision. The scar will usually run from the armpit down to the elbow.
An extended upper arm lift begins with an incision similar to that for a standard procedure, but the incision may continue and extend down the side of the chest. This procedure is most helpful for patients who have experienced major weight loss and have a lot of excess skin.
After surgery patients may need to have drains in the surgical site to reduce fluid buildup, and may need to wear compression garments to help the healing process.
If you are considering an upper arm lift, a qualified plastic surgeon can help you decide which procedure is best for you.
Upper Arm Lift Risks
- Excessive bleeding
- Hematoma or seroma—fluid buildup under skin
- Changes in sensation
- Damage to surrounding anatomy
- Excessive scarring
- Blood clots
- Adverse reactions to anesthesia
- Dissatisfaction with results
Doctors must discuss all material risks of the procedure with patients in order to obtain informed consent before the procedure.
Medical Malpractice and Upper Arm Lifts
If your upper arm procedure was mishandled by a healthcare provider, you may have a medical malpractice case. A skilled medical malpractice attorney can help you determine if your injuries were caused by negligence.
The attorneys at Gilman & Bedigian are dedicated to protecting victims of medical malpractice. Our experienced attorneys have knowledge and skills necessary to win your case.
If you or a loved one has suffered a serious injury during an upper arm lift procedure, call Gilman & Bedigian today at (800) 529-6162 to schedule a free consultation and to learn more about your legal options.