Liposuction is a great way to reshape the upper arms by spot reducing excess fat, but only if you have firm, elastic skin. Unfortunately the skin of the upper arm is thinner than skin on most other parts of the body and is more likely to sag. This may be why armlift surgery (brachioplasty) has seen a 53 percent increase since 1997: It’s the only way to reshape your arms, sculpting the skin and fat that’s behind the bat-wing-like appearance. Traditionally those who choose an armlift have had to accept the trade-off that comes along with surgery—the scar that often runs the length of the inside of the upper arm from the armpit to the elbow. But New York City plastic surgeon Lawrence Reed, MD, is among a handful of surgeons who have improved the modified surgical lift of the upper arm to limit scars to the underarm region and the side of the chest in a majority of patients. As Dr. Lawrence Reed describes it: “Traditional brachioplasty delivers youthful, firm arms, but most patients won’t show them off because of the scar.” However, the promise of a less visible scar has a trade-off of its own; while recovering from this modified procedure, you can’t lift your arms above the shoulder for four to five weeks.
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