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Exercise After Arm Lift

I will be getting an Arm Lift (Brachioplasty) in around 6 months. I want my arms to have a nice toned look like they used to have. Should I start weight training again before the surgery, or wait until after the procedure and the skin is tightened? Which one will get me the best, toned look?

Doctor Answers (33)

Arm lift and timing of exercise

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The very best results come in patients who are at their baseline weights. That is the weight they "live at", not necessarily the weight they would like to be.

The reason for this is that the baseline weight is how the patient spends most of their life, and the surgery should be optimized for that state, not for an artificially high or low weight, or an artificially high or low degree of physical conditioning.

Of course it is best for a patient to maximize the health of their diet, and of their exercise program as a part of a healthy lifestyle. If they choose to start working out regularly and plan on sustaining that, then I feel they should stabilize before undergoing surgery. It may be that more pounds will come off...and stay off!

I do not believe patients should gain/lose weight etc. or work out specifically before/after the surgery if these measures are not sustainable. Otherwise the surgeon is operating on a patient who is in a "temporary" state.

Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 102 reviews

Pre-Op Weight Training Can Help!

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In my experience anybody who shows up to the operating room in better shape has better outcomes. You can certainly spend your time getting fit and toned before your procedure even though it may not manifest the improved contours until your surgery manifests itself. In a patient who is undergoing a brachioplasty, I always discuss with them that more definition can be obtained with vaser liposelection at the same time as the excess arm skin that is being removed. Vaser liposelection will give better contours of the biceps and deltoid region while the excess skin is being removed with the scar that’s left in between the biceps and triceps on the inner arm. After your surgery is completed, it usually takes about 3 weeks for the swelling to settle down during which time you should get some massages. After 3 weeks in my practice I strongly urge my patients to resume a more aggressive physical regiment.

Paul Vanek, MD
Cleveland Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 21 reviews

Weight Training Helps Brachioplasty

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Toning your muscles with resistance training will definitely help with the results of your arm lift (brachioplasty)!

I recommend you start  as soon as you can before surgery, but it is not necessary to delay your surgery date in order to do toning exercises.

To allow good post-op healing, allow 6 weeks before resuming toning/resistance training for your arms.

I hope you get great results!

Paul C. Zwiebel, MD
Denver Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 14 reviews

Fitness helps with body contouring

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The best results with arm lift procedures are seen in patients with lax arm tissues and minimal fatty deposits. It would help your post-op result immensely if you can achieve a close-to-ideal body weight prior to arm lift surgery. Working out will help achieve that goal, and will improve the muscle tone of your arms.

Exercise for arm lifts

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Your arms will look best when you help yourself as well as consult with an expert surgeon.  For optimal results, before surgery you should be at your ideal weight and you should have substantial muscles from weight training. If that is not possible, do the best you can before and after your procedure. 

David Stoker, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 21 reviews

Exercise Should Be Avoided For 6-8 Weeks Following Brachioplasty

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                  The results of brachioplasty are best when combined with life style changes. These changes may involve both diet and exercise. The benefits of exercise may occur both pre-operatively and post-operatively. In the post-operative period, it’s important to have adequate healing before starting a workout routine. For this reason, strenuous exercise should be avoided for 6 to 8 weeks following surgery.

                  When brachioplasty is combined with exercises that are designed to improve muscle tone, results can be excellent. It’s important to discuss exercise routines with your surgeon before getting started. Your surgeon will be able to help you formulate an exercise routine that will help maximize your result. 

Exercise After Armlift

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A patient can resume most activities in 3 - 4 weeks without any problems after having armlift surgery.

Rod J. Rohrich, MD
Dallas Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 20 reviews

Exercise Before and After Arm Lift

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Start toning your muscles prior to surgery and then when your plastic surgeon allows you to resume after surgery start up your exercise regimen again for best arm lift results.

Larry S. Nichter, MD, MS, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 59 reviews

Arm Lifting and Exercise?

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Thank you for the question.

Exercise before AND  after the procedure will help you with the “best, toned look”.

Please make sure you are working with a well experienced board-certified plastic surgeon.

Best wishes.

Toning your arms before surgery

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  By working out and toning your arms as much as possible before an arm lift or Brachioplasty procedure you can only help yourself and your results more.  This is because you will tone your muscles and decrease the amount of fat beneath the skin, therefore, your surgeon will be able to remove more skin at the time of surgery and get even better results.  Good luck- Erez Sternberg, MD.

Erez Sternberg, MD
Jacksonville Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 20 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.