This sharepost is part of a series about total body contouring plastic surgery that My Bariatric Life underwent following massive weight loss.
Surgeon’s pre-operative photo for my brachioplasty (arm lift plastic surgery).
Healng of the skin dehiscence in the left and right axilla (wound separation in the arm pit) and skin necrosis along the right arm incision at 6-weeks post brachioplasty.
Read part 1 of My Experience with Complications after Arm Lift.
In reviewing my photos, my surgeon said he could see the beginning of granulation tissue at the base of the arm wounds and that they appeared to be healing. I told him that my arm looked awful and now had some slight bleeding, and he said that is the next phase of healing. Overall he told me things were moving in the right direction. He did prepare me that I will have a thicker scar in this arm that he will revise in his office when the time is right.
I feel an intermittent burning sensation, as well as a sharpness if I extend my arms too far. Treatment is to continue to keep the area dry with gauze, and my surgeon prefers the rough gauze that clings to and removes the debris. He did allow me to try a product that a few patients had recommended to me called Xeroform, which is gauze with pertroleum and 3% Bismuth Tribromophenate. I always run everything past my plastic surgeon. However, he quickly had me go back to the dry gauze as he did not like the way my arms looked with that treatment.
Healing seemed to slow down after that. So I increased my protein substantially to help my body recover. Shortly thereafter two sutures worked their way out of my arm wound. Immediately after that the wound healed, at 6-weeks post op exactly as my surgeon had predicted. My incisions have already begun to turn to a fine white line.
My axilla healing has progressed as well. They are about 1-cm in size and I don’t have to treat them with the dry gauze any longer. The healing is a little slower because I have been active, living life as usual. I’ve even returned to the gym at 6-weeks post op. This was all done with my surgeon’s consent.
Healing of skin necrosis along the right arm incision at 7.5-weeks post brachioplasty.
The arm wounds that began at 2 and 3-weeks post-op have healed on schedule. It really looked much worse in the photos than it was in real life. Annoying is what it was more than anything else. Even so, I was grateful that my surgeon had been in touch with me on a regular basis throughout this recovery. It kept me very calm to be under his care. Twice I got scared and called him, mostly owing to patients on forums telling me all sorts of terrible things that would happen to my arms.
The reality is that this complication was only a minor setback. I think it is quite a testament to my surgeon’s skills that I went through nearly 6.5-hours of surgery during which he lifted my entire body, and I came through it with what amounts to a “boo boo.”
Living life well-fed,
My Bariatric Life
American Society of Plastic Surgeons arm lift risks and safety information
Published On: November 02, 2013