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20 and Recovering from Arm Lift!

I'm only 20 years old, but have been overweight...

I'm only 20 years old, but have been overweight most of my life. Between the ages of 10 and 11 I gained approximately 80-100 pounds, which led to my being 250 pounds and in the 7th grade. From this high weight, I now weigh about 185, a weight I would be comfortable at if not for the excess amount of skin I have on my arms and sides. I'm having an extended brachioplasty next week, as well as dermolipectomy around my ribcage.

Nervous and Pondering

A little over 4 days to go! I'm starting to realize how terrified I am of the pain and possibility of a poor result. I'm also interested in what will happen if I lose an additional 20-40 pounds after the procedure. Will my skin stretch out again? Perhaps I rushed into this.

Tomorrow is the day!

In twelve hours I'll be on the operating table! My mother flew in to take care of me (oh, the joys of being young) and we're all settled in. I was a bit nervous before but after talking everything over with the doctor I'm confident in the decision. I appreciate the kind comments and love reading all the other reviews on here. You guys are what inspired me to go for this in the first place! I'm thinking I need to take more before pictures of my back and sides to compare after tomorrow.

Recovering, slowly but surely

Surgery went five and a half hours yesterday, longer than the doctor expected. Upon waking up, I burst into tears from the immediate pain. Since that time, I've been doing alright but am struggling to move much at all. I also spent all of yesterday nauseous and couldn't keep any food or liquid down. The arms are not nearly as limiting as the skin removed from my sides and back. The pictures posted are from yesterday. Hoping this gets better. :(

"It'll all be worth it."

This has been my mantra the past few days amidst the frustration and doubts. With a change in pain medication my nausea issues have subsided, and the non-narcotic is still managing my pain fairly well. I'm up and walking every hour or so, but still have trouble with lifting my arms more than a few inches up and have pain upon standing up straight. I have my post-op tomorrow and can't wait to see the first results of the procedures, and to take a real shower! I was planning on going to class today, but the snowstorm provided me with a snow day! I'll take that and try to get up and going tomorrow, but I really don't want to go to classes with these drains hanging off of me. Hoping those come out tomorrow as well since there's hardly any drainage. Things definitely got better! Thanks so much for all the support.

Drains out, loving the results!

I had my first post-op appointment yesterday and the drains did indeed come out! They were VERY painful coming out and I was a bit freaked out by how much of the drain was inside of me! But I'm happy to have them gone as it made me feel much more able to move around and go in public. The bandages came off with them, and I was pretty happy with the results! My arms are still a lot bigger than I'd like, but they are CRAZY swollen.
I went back to classes yesterday and have overall been pretty free and comfortable. Still taking pain meds but have been out shopping all day without too much exhaustion. I was so SO happy to buy some things today that I never ever EVER would have bought before! I absolutely cannot wait for this summer. Thanks for all the love! I hope everyone else recovering on here is doing well! I'll be posting pics soon!

Picture time!

Looking back through the before pics is just so startling. HUGE difference already. My arms are still big and I don't like the swollen bulges on my back, but I'm hoping that improves with time.

Post-surgical blues?

Has anyone on here had any experience with sadness after surgery? I'm happy with the results, but have had a hard time concentrating and have been generally down the past couple of days. My mother left last night and I've been crying on and off ever since. I did some research and it might have to do with after-effects of anesthesia? I'm also still needing my pain meds at almost a week out, is this normal? I'm taking something non-narcotic, but nonetheless feel guilty for needing the meds.

2 and a half weeks out, feeling much better!

I've been off this site for awhile as I've been getting back into my classes, work, and extracurricular responsibilities. I've been healing pretty well, except for a small hole that opened up in my left armpit. My right arm is still showing less swelling than my left, and I wish both of them were a lot smaller, but I suppose they are fairly proportionate for my body size at this time. I hope to post pictures soon, and can't thank all of you enough for the kind comments. The sadness has mostly gone away, and I'm still tired and a bit out of touch, but haven't been experiencing the extreme "down in the dumps" feeling that I had a week post-op. I also just received a very expensive anesthesia bill for the extra surgery time--not really too pleased about that on top of my other bills. :(
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You are having the post surgery blues for sure! Everyone seems to get them....
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Hey stranger how are you doing?
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Oh girl the sadness is perfectly normal we all went through it. It'll pass I promise. As far as the pain meds - well i use those until i don't need them anymore . I came off after a week because it was making me sick but then got a lower dose which I had to start taking a few days ago only because of my arms though .
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Wow, looking great! Waiting to look decent and go shopping myself! Never wore sleeveless anything, can't wait.
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Thank you so much! And yes, it will be the best feeling in the world! I'm happy that you're going to feel better about yourself and get more freedom. :)
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Wow girl those pics are very Impressive ! The back swell don't stress I had mine lipo'd and it didn't make a visual difference at all so now instead of two long floppy saddle bags back there it's like to heavy sacs of water back there . It will be swollen. ! Same with arms ! Your arms look great! Also swelling there totally normal and will fluctuate day to day! Looking good ! Now I can't wait to get my back done! Thanks for sharing your pics !
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I'm so happy to hear that other people can see the difference! Sometimes it feels like my arms are just the same as before only now they have painful swelling and incisions. I will say that though I've experienced quite a bit of pain and discomfort from the skin removed around my ribcage, I feel as though it's already worth it. When are you thinking of having the back lift?
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Yeah that sounds more painful than I thought. Hopefully in September . Otherwise I'll set it up for right after Christmas . I'm sure it hurts like hell ! But girl this tummy tuck is no walk in the park so I think I'll be able to handle it lol. Also our bodies are shaped differently. I have more that hangs I'm the back and then it tapers to a little flap around my side . I'm sure it feels tight and hard to move . But u went to school and SHOPPING ! I'm almost 3 weeks and haven't left the house unless it was for a doctor appt so you're doing better than u think ! And trust me my arms swell up and down especially the first2 weeks. Now they're starting to calm down but still tight . So grosssss lol So how are you sleeping? Have u been able to get In and out of your bed or have you been sleepin in a recliner ?
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I can tell you for a fact, my back initially after surgery still have love handles (flanks?) and I was like umm go away! Now, my back is soooo tight, it gets tighter as the weeks go by and swelling decreases. You are looking great already so imagine in a few weeks :) x
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Just looked at your review! What a journey! you look great. :) Thanks so much for the encouragement.
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Xxx btw post surgery blues is soooo normal... It comes in waves! Esp if you are impatient like me! Xx try come off the meds slowly if they are making you sad, but if you need them I think it's important to stay on top of them. Big hugs - keep doing those comparison pics! Xx
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Thinkin of ya girly . Hope your days are getting easier
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Thank you! I've been doing really really well. :)
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The garment will be your enemy in the first days and later it will become kind of your friend when the swelling goes down. I'm now at my 6 weeks post surgery mark (tomorrow) and hardly have any discomfort but when I get home from work I put on the garment and in the morning before work I put it on. Not sure how long I will keep doing it since I hardly feel anything anymore and my scars look so good. Tomorrow I will make some new pictures and post them. My only regret is not having done this years ago but I didn't have the wings at age 20 like you have but I know why you had the surgery and how happy you will be when you see the results sooner than later. Good luck
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Hey Tammy18, I'm 2 days post op, finally did it. My arms do look smaller probably because of the compression garment. Really hoping the stay that way nice and slim. Did you have to buy smaller compression garments when the swelling went down? Can't wait to see your updated pictures.
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No I kept the same size and even though it wasnt at tight anymore it still gave and gives enough pressure. Right now im wearing it while sitting on the couch but I only wear it a few hours daily...not at work and neither at night. Take care and every day you probably feel a little better. You are so brave getting 5 procedures done at once.
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Tammy18 you are one of the people I wanted to thank so much for always being available to answer my questions. Thank you from the bottom of my heart :). No pain at all just discomfort. Can't wait until these garments are bearable.
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You are so welcome and some days your arms give you less comfort and then it may give you some more discomfort but I learned that it had to do with me overdoing it so I started to listed to my "arms"...if that makes sense. Now I'm back to arm weights and doing everything and as long as it isn't getting to warm i will wear the garment part time. Over all I forget that I even had surgery and I tonight I will make new pictures of my arms and especially from the scars that look pretty good even though it is me saying it. The only thing I noticed is that sometimes the scar is more red then other times when the redness is hardly visual and I'm not sure why that is but most likely at the 6 month mark it will be hard to see it and whatever is left to see, is something I will take at any time over "flappies/wings"
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Your arms look magnificent!
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Tammy, your arms are amazing! Even at just 3 days post op they looked better than my dream arms (sorry, I just spend a LOT of time thinking about arms lol). When did the swelling start going down for you?
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After my first post surgery appointment which was on Tuesday after my surgery the previous Friday...when the dressings were taken off the garment was not bothering me that much but then the swelling seems to go down little by little. The nights were the worse for me regarding the garment and I wish I had bought the garment with just the arms and the strap on the back but that was just because of the warm side of wearing the full body garment just for arm surgery. At my 4 week appointment I was told they were still a little swollen and I was shocked to hear that but also happy since that meant "thinner arms down the road"....between surgery and the first 14 days in my case was the most changes...the bruisings were not all bruises since most of it was glue over markings which looked like bruises ....im still wearing the garment part time but no longer because it feels better but maybe it will make a difference down the road and I only wear them at home. My husband said yesterday that they were my fashion statement. ..lol That was after we went clothing shopping and I never felt better about almost everything that I tried on and I only felt guilty about the amount I bought...lol Even old fitness clothes look so much better and some of them I wear with my garment underneath during work outs especially with dumbells arm exercises
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Just read your blog & hope you are doing better. I'm 2 days post op myself. T-scar brachio & bra line back lift. Total of 5 procedures. Was very nauseous after surgery & had a very dry mouth. The nurse didn't want to give any liquids because it provoked me to gag. Thank God I'm doing much better. But, ready to take theses garments off!
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I feel you on the garments! I'm so anxious to see what I'll be working with during the next stages of recovery! After day 2 things got a lot better for me, so look forward to more mobility and less pain. :)
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Glad you got to take it easy today. Hope you like what u see tomorrow. Please keep us posted on your progress.
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Hey girl hope things are starting to get better for you ?
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