Get the Scoop on Underarm Lipo – Purpose, Procedure, Recovery and Results

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A woman is posing with her arms up, showcasing the results of underarm lipo.

Underarm liposuction sculpts and defines the upper arms by eliminating stubborn fat pockets and tightening loose skin in the armpit area. This body contouring procedure targets the axillary region to create a more toned, smooth appearance.

While not a weight loss solution, underarm lipo reshapes the arms by reducing fat unresponsive to diet and exercise. It’s ideal for spot-reducing stubborn fatty bulges in those at or near their ideal weight.

What Is Underarm Liposuction?

Underarm liposuction, also known as axillary lipo, eliminates excess fat from the armpit area through suction. It is a body contouring procedure that can treat fatty deposits concentrated in the armpit/axillary region.

How Is Underarm Liposuction Performed?

During underarm lipo, a small incision is made in the armpit crease. A thin tube called a cannula connected to a vacuum device is inserted under the skin to break up and suction out unwanted fat.

Local anesthesia keeps the area numb, but whether to use it or general anesthesia depends on the individual case and Dr. Darren Smith’s recommendation.

Techniques like tumescent lipo and ultrasound-assisted lipo may be used. Tumescent fluid helps numb and loosen fat, while ultrasound liquefies fat before suctioning. The procedure takes anywhere from 30 minutes to several hours.

The removal of excess fat cells allows the remaining fat to smooth out. As swelling resolves, the armpit appears more contoured. The skin also tightens over the new shape.

While lipo cannot prevent future weight gain, destroyed fat cells do not return. Maintaining your weight helps long-lasting results.

What To Expect During Underarm Liposuction

A woman is undergoing an underarm lipo procedure with a surgeon.

Here is an overview of what to expect during a typical underarm liposuction procedure:

  1. Marking and photographic documentation of the treatment area. This helps guide Dr. Smith during the procedure.
  2. Administration of local anesthesia to numb the underarm area. The type, amount, and injection method depend on the specifics of the case.
  3. One or more small incisions are made in the natural underarm crease. The number and length vary.
  4. Insertion of a liposuction cannula to remove excess fat deposits. Different cannula types and suction methods may be utilized.
  5. Incision sites may be closed with sutures or allowed to close on their own if small enough.
  6. Although the axillary region is a difficult area for compression, a compression garment is still worn over the area after surgery to help control swelling. Length of time varies.
  7. Monitoring period in the facility before being medically cleared for release to begin recovery. Duration depends on the extent of the procedure.
  8. Contouring of the area by Dr. Smith with the goal of achieving smooth results tailored to the patient’s objectives. Some risks and potential complications may need to be discussed.
  9. Further details on recovery timeline, post-procedure guidelines, and long-term expectations would also be beneficial to patients.

What Are The Results of Underarm Lipo?

Underarm lipo results are visible right away, with improvements seen as healing progresses over 4-6 weeks. It may take several weeks or even months for the swelling to fully subside and the final results to be apparent. Benefits include:

  • Removal of excess armpit fat for a more contoured look
  • Smoother, tighter axillary skin as it adheres to a new shape. Keep in mind that the degree of skin tightening can depend on factors like the patient’s age, skin elasticity, and the specific area being treated.
  • Eliminating stubborn fat bulges unresponsive to diet and exercise
  • More attractive contours and proportions in the upper arm
  • Confidence boost from reduced armpit fat and enhanced aesthetics

It’s important to have realistic expectations – mild weight changes can affect long-term results. A healthy lifestyle helps maintain your refined armpit contours.

Did you know that it can help remove body odor as well? One study looked at how effective a specific type of underarm liposuction, called liposuction curettage (LC), is at treating excessive body odor (bromhidrosis). This research included data from ten other studies involving 1124 people.

The findings showed that LC was just as effective as other treatments at reducing body odor, but it was safer with fewer complications. These results were consistent across the research, suggesting they are dependable. So, LC could be a good primary treatment option for bromhidrosis.

How long does armpit liposuction last?

Armpit liposuction provides long-lasting results and can be a permanent solution if the patient doesn’t gain weight and new fat deposits don’t develop in the armpit area. If that happens, a repeat procedure may be warranted.

What Is Recovery Like After Underarm Lipo?

Underarm lipo is an outpatient procedure with minimal downtime. Here is a general recovery timeline:

  • Week 1 – Moderate swelling and bruising as incision site heals. Wear compression garment continuously.
  • Week 2 – Follow-up appointment. Swelling improves. Stitches may be removed.
  • Weeks 3-4 – Transition to nighttime compression garment wear. Resume light activities.
  • Weeks 4-6 – Swelling continues to resolve. Clearance for normal activities.
  • Months 2-3 – Final refinements to contours and skin tightening.

Most recovery occurs in the first month, with gradual improvements extending around 3 months.

Compression garments may need to be worn for 6-8 weeks or longer in some cases. Additionally, vigorous exercise should be avoided for up to how long Dr. Darren Smith requires.

What Are The Costs of Underarm Liposuction?

Average cost of underarm lipo ranges from $2,000 – $5,000, influenced by factors like:

  • The average cost of underarm liposuction ranges from $2,000 – $5,000, according to multiple sources. This can vary based on factors like the surgeon’s fee, extent of fat removal needed, anesthesia fees, and facility charges.
  • The surgeon’s fee is a major factor influencing cost. More experienced surgeons tend to charge higher fees. Fees also depend on the technique used and complexity of the procedure.
  • Geographic location impacts cost. Areas with a higher cost of living tend to have higher liposuction costs.
  • More extensive fat removal and multiple areas treated can increase the cost as well. Treating multiple areas in one surgery saves versus separate procedures.
  • Other factors like anesthesia, operating room fees, garments, and medications may add to the total cost.
  • Many plastic surgeons offer financing options to make procedures more affordable, so this is worth inquiring about.

When choosing a surgeon, expertise, and experience should take priority over finding the lowest price. Higher cost does not always mean better quality.

Is Armpit Fat Removal Safe?

Though liposuction can provide significant improvements, patients should be aware of some potential risks like temporary pain, swelling, bruising, numbness or changed sensation in the armpit skin, asymmetry or irregularities as the skin tightens during healing, minimal scarring at the incision site, or adverse events like infection. 

In short, it has to be performed by an experienced, board-certified plastic surgeon. Following Dr. Smith’s instructions can help minimize risks and support safe, successful underarm fat removal.

Who Makes a Good Underarm Lipo Candidate?

  • Adults in overall good health seeking spot reduction of armpit fat are typically good candidates. Liposuction is not a weight loss solution but can address localized fat deposits.
  • Those with good skin elasticity and localized fat deposits in the axillary region tend to get the best outcomes. Poor skin elasticity can lead to loose skin after fat removal.
  • Individuals at a stable weight near their goal BMI make ideal candidates. Significant further weight loss could impact results.
  • Non-smokers are preferred as smoking impairs healing.
  • People with realistic expectations about the procedure tend to be more satisfied. Underarm lipo removes small, concentrated fat pockets rather than large volumes.
  • Patients with mild to moderate armpit fat find the best outcomes. Those with excess loose skin may need additional procedures beyond lipo for optimal contouring.
  • The procedure may not be right for people with health conditions like diabetes, heart disease, or circulation issues that can impair healing.
  • Your plastic surgeon will evaluate your specific case to determine if you are a good candidate during a consultation. Factors like skin elasticity, fat volume, and expectations are assessed.

Underarm lipo is better for removing small, concentrated fat pockets rather than significant volumes. Patients with mild to moderate armpit fat find the best outcomes.

Those with excess loose skin may need additional procedures beyond lipo for optimal contouring, such as an armpit lift.

The Dr. Smith Approach: Precise, Natural-Looking Underarm Lipo Results

Dr. Smith is performing an underarm lipo procedure on a patient.

For the right candidates, underarm liposuction can successfully eliminate localized armpit fat to sculpt the upper arms. Experienced surgeons help ensure safe, effective axillary fat removal, minimal downtime, and satisfying aesthetic improvements.

This body contouring procedure can provide permanent refinements to the armpit area unresponsive to diet and exercise alone. Underarm lipo delivers discreet reshaping that can boost confidence in sleeveless clothing.

To find out if you are a good underarm lipo candidate, schedule a consultation with board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Darren Smith.

At his New York practice, your goals are heard. He will create a personalized treatment and employ advanced techniques for optimal outcomes from this type of liposuction.