Arm liposuction is a common cosmetic procedure that removes excess fat from the upper arms.
It’s an ideal option for people with difficulty losing arm fat through diet and exercise.
The procedure involves the use of local or general anesthesia.
During the procedure, your surgeon makes small incisions in the arms and inserts a thin cannula tube. The cannula suctions out the fat cells.
Liposuction in arms can be completed in one or two sessions and usually requires a recovery period of about two weeks.
It’s crucial to note that although liposuction generally provides lasting results in the arms, the fat may reappear if you gain weight following lipo for arms.
Types of Arm Liposuction
There are four main types of arm liposuction:
- Traditional liposuction: Involves using a cannula to suction out fat cells through small incisions in the skin.
- Tumescent liposuction: Includes injecting a substantial amount of local anesthetic solution into the area to numb it and decrease bleeding and bruising during fat removal.
- Ultrasound-assisted liposuction (UAL): This procedure uses ultrasound waves to break up fat cells prior to suctioning. It can aid in removing more fat cells while causing less injury to surrounding tissues.
- Laser-assisted liposuction (LAL): The surgeon uses laser energy to break down and suction fat cells during this procedure. It can also help to improve skin tightening.
The type of arm liposuction that is best for you will depend on your needs and goals.
The surgeon will discuss the options and help you choose the right one.
Who Is a Good Candidate?
An ideal candidate for arm liposuction is an individual who:
- Is in good overall health
- Is within 30% of their ideal body weight
- Has excess fat in the upper arms that is not responsive to diet and exercise
- Has realistic expectations for the procedure’s outcomes.
- Is willing to take the time to recover from the procedure
Here are some factors that may make someone a less suitable candidate for arm liposuction:
- Having loose or sagging skin in the upper arms
- Having a history of medical conditions that could affect the healing process
- Being a smoker or having a history of smoking
- Being pregnant or breastfeeding
The Process of Arm Liposuction
Here is a step-by-step look at what happens during the procedure, from the initial consultation to the recovery period:
- Initial consultation: During your first meeting, you will discuss your goals for the procedure with the surgeon and learn about the potential benefits and risks.The surgeon will also assess your overall health and fitness to determine your eligibility for arm liposuction.
- Preoperative testing: You may need to undergo some preoperative testing, such as blood work and an EKG. This is to ensure that you are healthy enough to undergo the procedure.
- Day of surgery: The surgeon will perform liposuction for Arms under local or general anesthesia. Your circumstances will determine the type of anesthesia the surgeon will use.
- The procedure: During your procedure, the surgeon will create tiny incisions in your arms and introduce a slender tube known as a cannula. They will use this cannula to draw out the fat cells. Your specific objectives will determine the quantity of fat removed.
- Recovery: After undergoing the procedure, recovering takes two weeks. During this time, you will need to wear compression garments to minimize swelling and bruising. Additionally, you may feel some pain and discomfort, but pain medication can help manage these symptoms.
Risks and Complications of Arm Liposuction
Although arm liposuction is generally safe, some potential risks and complications can occur, including:
- Bruising: Bruising is a common side effect of liposuction in arms. It usually resolves on its own within a few weeks.
- Swelling: Swelling is also a common side effect of liposuction in arms. It usually peaks within the first few days after surgery and gradually subsides over the next few weeks.
- Infection: Infection of the arms is a rare liposuction complication you can treat with antibiotics.
- Numbness: Numbness is a possible side effect of arm liposuction. It is usually temporary, but in some cases, it can be permanent.
- Seromas: Seroma is a buildup of fluid under the skin. It can occur after any type of liposuction, including arm liposuction. You can treat seromas with needle aspiration or drainage.
- Allergic reaction: An allergic reaction to the local anesthetic or other medications used during lipo in arms is a rare but possible complication.
- Fat embolism: Fat embolism is a severe complication where fat cells enter the bloodstream during liposuction. They travel to the lungs, causing shortness of breath, chest pain, and other symptoms.
Before undergoing a medical procedure, it is crucial to have a discussion with your surgeon regarding any possible risks or complications.
The Results of Liposuction in Arms
Arm liposuction results are not permanent, and the fat may return if you gain weight or do not maintain a healthy lifestyle.
Typically, you will see visible results within a few weeks after the procedure.
The swelling may take several months to subside before seeing final results.
The amount of fat the surgeon removes during arm liposuction varies for each individual.
Most people will see a noticeable decrease in upper arm size and appearance.
In some instances, arm liposuction may be combined with other procedures, such as brachioplasty (arm lift), to achieve the desired results.
Here are some things to keep in mind about the results of lipo on arms:
- The final results of arm lipo may take several weeks or months to become visible as swelling subsides.
- Liposuction on arms is not a weight-loss procedure but a means to eliminate excess fat from the upper arms. Those who are overweight must commit to a healthy diet and exercise regimen.
- Arm liposuction results can be affected by your overall health, age, and genetics.
The results are not permanent. The fat removed during arm liposuction may return if you gain weight.
The Cost of Arm Liposuction
The price of liposuction on the arms can differ based on various factors.
In the United States, the average cost of arm liposuction is between $3,000 and $6,000.
However, the cost can range from as low as $1,500 to as high as $10,000 or more.
Here are some of the factors that can affect the cost of arm liposuction:
- The surgeon’s fees: The surgeon’s fees are the most significant component of the arm liposuction cost. Surgeons’ fees vary depending on their experience, location, and reputation.
- The location of the procedure: The cost of liposuction on arms can also vary depending on the location of the procedure. Procedures performed in urban areas are more expensive than those done in rural areas.
- The amount of fat removed: The amount your surgeon will remove also affects the cost. More fat removal will require more time and effort, increasing the cost.
- Other factors: Other factors may include the type of anesthesia used, the cost of follow-up care, and the cost of any needed medications or compression garments.
Things to Consider Before Getting Liposuction on Arms
Here are some things to consider before getting arm liposuction:
- Your goals: What are you hoping to achieve with arm lipo? Are you looking to reduce the overall size of your arms, or are you more concerned about removing fat from specific areas, such as the underarms or backs of the arms?
- Your health: Are you in good overall health? Arm liposuction is generally safe for people who are healthy and within a healthy weight range. However, suppose you have any underlying health conditions, such as diabetes or heart disease. In that case, you should talk to your doctor about whether arms liposuction is right for you.
- Your expectations: Arm liposuction is not a miracle cure for loose or sagging skin. If you have significant skin laxity, you may need to consider a brachioplasty (arm lift) in addition to liposuction.
- The risks and complications: Arm lipo is a safe procedure, but there are some risks and complications that can occur, such as bruising, swelling, infection, and numbness. Before undergoing the procedure, discuss the potential risks with your surgeon.
- The cost: Arms liposuction can be expensive. When deciding, it is essential to factor in the cost of the procedure and follow-up care.
- The recovery time: Arm liposuction typically requires a recovery period of two to four weeks. During this time, you will need to wear compression garments and avoid strenuous activity.
Research and talk to your doctor to learn more about the procedure and whether it is right for you.
Here are some additional tips for choosing a surgeon for arm liposuction:
- Verify that the surgeon is certified by the board in plastic surgery.
- Get recommendations from friends, family, or other healthcare providers.
- Interview several surgeons before making a decision.
- Ask about the surgeon’s experience with lipo in arms.
- Ask about the surgeon’s fees and what they include.
- Ask about the risks and complications of arm liposuction.
By following these tips, you can ensure a successful and safe arm liposuction experience.
Recovery Tips for Liposuction in Arms
Recovery begins after you wake up from anesthesia. The first two weeks after surgery are crucial.
The procedure’s outcome depends on how well you care for yourself during recovery.
Expect some blood to ooze from the incisions for up to two days after surgery. Fatty acids and anesthesia may also leak out, so your surgeon will place cotton gauze over the incisions to absorb the drainage.
- Follow-up appointments are essential, especially 3 to 7 days after the surgery.
- The surgeon recommends wearing a compression garment on your arms and taking prescribed antibiotics and pain relievers to prevent infection and aid recovery.
- An ultrasound will be performed on your arms two weeks after surgery to check for blood circulation and reduce swelling. It is necessary to wear the compression garment for 12 hours every day.
- It is common to have some loose skin after surgery. The skin will not contract independently in most cases (80-90%).
- Do not exercise the area immediately after surgery, which can cause pain and delay healing. To reduce swelling, you can do cardio or walk to encourage circulation.
- Wearing a compression garment for your arms after liposuction will help your body recover more quickly.
Arm Liposuction Scars: Does It Leave Noticeable Scars?
When undergoing arm liposuction, small incisions are made in the armpits or the underside of the arms, typically measuring about 1/4 inch in length.
These incisions are closed with either stitches or dissolvable sutures.
The scars may appear red, swollen, and tender during the healing process and discharge blood or fluid.
To prevent infection, keeping the incisions clean and dry is essential. Over time, the scars will gradually lighten and fade.
However, some individuals, especially those with darker skin tones, may experience thicker or darker scars.
The arm liposuction procedure aims at contouring the body rather than reducing weight.
It targets unwanted fat in the arms and is not a permanent solution, as the fat cells can return if you gain weight.
However, it comes with risks such as bleeding, bruising, infection, and uneven results.
It’s vital to carefully follow the surgeon’s instructions after the procedure to minimize the risk of complications.