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Can I improve the shape of my arms?

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Can I improve the shape of my arms?

How can I improve the shape of my arms?

There are several different ways to improve arm shape. It really depends the patient’s goals and anatomical issues. Specialists can improve the definition of the arm, make the arm a bit smaller if its circumference is a bit larger than desired; and then there are people that have excess hanging tissue on their arms and that’s something doctors can address very effectively as well. They’ll do that by looking at the different tissues of the arm and the problems they could be causing. For the arm, there are 3 basic kinds of tissue that they need to focus on. There is muscle, there’s fat and there is skin, and it’s the amount and properties of each of these tissues that in combination define the shape of the arm.

For the person that’s looking for better arm definition it is necessary to make sure that there is good muscle mass, to see those curves and contours in the arms and there is a good underlying foundation for that. The classic way to improve arm muscle definition is to go to the gym and exercise biceps and triceps. For people who don’t have the time or energy to get to the gym as much as they’d like to, a great option is EMSculpt. It uses highly focused electromagnetic energy to cause contractions of the biceps or triceps. Authorities can use it almost anywhere on the body with some exceptions, and what this does is stimulate muscle contractions that are much stronger than people could ever achieve on their own in the gym, to the tune of about 20000 wraps in approximately 30 minutes. With 4 sessions of EMSculpt over the course of 2 weeks they can really get some very nice muscle definition. If they want to build a nice muscular foundation for the arm, EMSculpt is a great way to go. Once specialists built up muscular foundation for the arm, they need to make sure that they can see it, and the things that might prevent them being able to see that nice muscular definition, are excess fat or loose or extra skin. And this takes them into the next couple categories for the kinds of tissue that they might need to address to get the arms into the shape that they’d like them to be in.  If there is extra fat in the arm that’s going to make the arm circumference a bit larger than desired, and it’s also going to hide any muscular definition that surgeons work to build up.  The best way to get rid of extra fat in the arms is with some targeted liposuction. Liposuction of the arms is a really powerful procedure that is very easy for the patient to go through, and plastic surgeons often do this under local anesthesia so that patients don’t even need to go to sleep. Patients can if they want to, but they really don’t have to for this kind of procedure, and the way that it works,  doctors make a couple extremely well hidden incisions that are about 2 to 3 millimeters in length usually in the folds behind the arm where the arm meets the shoulder, doctors put in some numbing medicine called tumescent fluid, they let that sit for about 10 to 15 minutes to let it take effect and then they come back with a long thin instrument called a cannula and carefully suction out the extra fat that they don’t want there anymore. The whole procedure usually doesn’t take more than 45 minutes, and the patient may go home right afterwards. Specialists recommend to wear compression garment for 48 hours. If this is done on a Friday, the patient can be back at work on Monday in almost all cases, and they can be back at the gym by Wednesday in this example of having the surgery on Friday for most people. It is a very easy procedure to go through with very powerful results.

The other thing that stands in the way of seeing great arm definition in a really pleasing arm contour is extra skin. There are a couple different ways to approach extra skin on the arms. For people that have mild to moderate skin excess of the arms, the way to deal with this is with the radio frequency skin tightening. The way that this works is the same very small incisions that are used for liposuction, and surgeons put one prong of this device under the skin, one goes over the skin and radio frequency energy is passed between the 2 prongs across the skin. That is called bipolar radiofrequency energy, one pole under the skin, one pole over the skin, and the tissue is heated in a very controlled manner to get to temperatures that will cause skin contraction and at the same time this builds collagen and elastin and essentially shrink wrap the skin to really outline the contours of the arm that was achieved either with the EMSculpting, with liposuction, or both. For this procedure it’s really very similar to having liposuction performed. Surgeons often do it at the same time as liposuction. The one difference is that doctors recommend patients to wear compression garment for about a month after this procedure to really help that skin shrink down or contract to see that shape that they’ve been working towards. 

For people with a bit more severe skin laxity of the arms, they offer more invasive procedures. Doctors actually remove the skin. This is called a brachioplasty or arm lift. The most common kind of arm lift is a procedure where an incision is made on the inside surface of the arm going essentially from the armpit to the elbow, and this is to remove extra skin. This is a pretty major procedure. It leaves a real scar behind, which usually does fade over time but patients will always have some scar present and it’s a fairly long scar, so this procedure is for people that really have severe skin excess and are willing to trade having that scar for an improvement in their skin excess. In some instances surgeons can do what is called a mini brachioplasty. This operation is really for people that have the majority of their skin excess in the upper third of their arm, and for this procedure, instead of making one of these long incisions from the inside of the shoulder to the elbow, what they make is a much smaller incision that is just hidden in the armpit.  This is a great option for people that have just a little bit of extra skin near their armpit or the upper third of their arm. 

Building that shape of the arm has now been addressed from essentially the foundation. It is getting a really nice muscle tone with some EMSculp and then uncovering that muscle tone by doing some target liposuction, and then making sure there isn’t too much skin in the way to hide the results. Surgeons do this usually with radio frequency energy, and in severe cases doctors might talk about a brachioplasty.  The real arts of achieving excellence in arm contouring is deciding which of these procedures a patient will benefit from the most, the right combination of procedures, if more than one procedure is necessary, putting all that together in a way that is best aligned with the patient’s goals.

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