Arm Lifts Grow In Popularity – From USA Today

  • Posted on: Apr 30 2013
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From today’s USA Today:

“Arm lifts” have become one of the fastest-growing varieties of plastic surgery, a new study shows.

More than 15,000 women underwent an arm lift in 2012, an increase of more than 4,000% since 2000, according to a report out Monday from the American Society of Plastic Surgeons.

The popularity of the procedures isn’t driven by a desire to look as good as Michelle Obama does in a sleeveless sheath.

Instead, the surgeries are growing because more people are losing massive amounts of weight, usually through obesity surgery, says David Reath, a plastic surgeon in Knoxville, Tenn., and chairman of the public education committee for the plastic surgeon society.

About 200,000 Americans a year undergo some kind of weight-loss procedure, such as gastric bypass, says Jack Fisher, president of the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, from Nashville.

While surgery can help people lose weight and fat, it doesn’t decrease the amount of skin, Reath says. People who lose 100 pounds or more can be left with a lot of extra skin.

“Once skin is stretched out, it becomes like a broken rubber band,” Fisher says. “Even when you lose weight, the skin doesn’t go back to its normal shape.”

The number of cosmetic surgeries increased by 3% last year, to nearly 1.7 million,  according to the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery. When non-surgical options such as botox injections are included, Americans had more than 10 million cosmetic procedures last year.

Arm lifts aren’t for everyone.

The surgeries can cost $5,000 or more out-of-pocket, Fisher says. And they leave patients with a scar that stretches from their elbow to their armpit.

The problem with the arm lift (aka brachioplasty) is that it leaves a long scar that extends from elbow to armpit.  The scar is visible when you wave at someone and lift your arm up.  For this reason, it’s usually reserved for people with a lot of excess skin, such as massive weight loss patients.  It’s typically combined with liposuction for an optimal result.

For the rest of the USA Today article, click HERE.

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