Are painkillers needed after an arm lift (brachioplasty)?

Even though I'm scared of my actual arm lift surgery, I'm even more afraid of the few days after my arm lift when I have to wait for my arms to heal. Everyone who knows me says that I have zero tolerance for pain. Honestly, I'm a big baby. So, the thought of not having any painkillers prescribed by my doctor terrifies me. I need to know that I'll have something to deal with the pain.


F, 61, Maryland

Tags:woman age 55-64 arms pain lift pain medication

After my procedure, I was experiencing some pain and discomfort and pain drugs helped me a lot. Although an arm elevation was done to reduce discomfort, the doctor also gave me painkillers to reduce the pain and discomfort. During the procedure, the doctor injected me with an anesthetic drug that reduced my pain after the operation. The simple painkillers that I was given easily controlled any pains that I experienced after the surgery. I also got a compression garment after the surgery that minimized swelling. In addition to the painkillers, the doctor gave me antibiotics to get rid of any infections around the cuts. At first I was afraid that the process would be very painful but the painkillers really helped after the surgery. I am a big baby with pain but the painkillers helped me a lot. I was so happy that my doctor prescribed painkillers.

I'm sure the doctors will give you some sort of pain killer for your recovery. Usually they will give you a pain killer and an antibiotic in case of infection after most cosmetic procedures. This will better your chances of a normal recovery and speed up the healing process. Most patients are off of the pain meds a few days after the surgery as they are beginning to move around more. One of the most common pain killers that is prescribed is hydrocodone and the antibiotic that is penicillin. Your doctor will prescribe something different if you are allergic to either of these medicines or have a medical condition that prevents you from taking them. You will definitely not have to worry about not having a painkiller for your recovery. I have been prescribed both of these medicines before and they helped tremendously.

Yes, arm lift surgery is a major surgical procedure and of course, it will be painful. Not only in the immediate affected area, but coming down from the anesthesia is probably the worst part. Nothing can really prepare you for the sickening feeling of coming down from general anesthesia. It's like being hit by a train. That being said, the docs are happy to give you pain meds, and powerful ones. If you've got concerns about the pain, let your doctor know so that he can provide dosing accordingly. I've had some pretty major surgeries myself, including an arm lift, and been in a lot of pain. Honestly, the next dose of pain meds was the best part of my day! Enjoy it while it lasts. After about 5 days, I felt like I didn't need the Vicodin. I tapered off of it and found that ibuprofen did the trick just fine after a while. So, yes, it's a doozy. But it doesn't last forever. The pain meds do their job. It's a rewarding surgery to have and I'm very happy with the results. My lift surgery completely corrected my loose skin and has left me feeling like I'm 30 again. If anything, having the final results to look forward to will support you in toughing it out. Honestly, when I removed the bandages for good, it was like unwrapping a Christmas gift!

Hey there. Yeah, it's rough. I found that (without painkillers) I was in a lot of pain. I tried to go without them after getting cosmetic surgery on my upper arm just to see how it would feel because I'm like that! The addictive nature of the painkillers and their possible side effects did make me nervous, so I try to only use what I need. That being said, I had a fully filled prescription from the doctor and as soon as I realized that I wasn't going to be in any state to be skipping out on my dose, I took it. Relief is right there. The stuff they're prescribing these days is powerful. I'd be cautious if you are worried, like I was, about getting addicted, but really do need some kind of pain meds after plastic surgery. If you're concerned, consult your doctor about your post op pain med options. For me, the inflammation was was really tough to handle. My husband found some research on the internet on herbal supplements and turmeric. He started adding that to our dinners, and I noticed that the herb also seemed to help with swelling. Good luck!

Your Dr. will surely provide you with painkillers while you recover from your arm lift. I'm a pretty big baby as well so it was something I was concerned about beforehand. After I got my arms done to get rid of my excess skin, I took pain killers for about a week afterwards but was given the option of continuing with the pain killers longer if needed. I wasn't in much pain, my arms just had a odd numb feeling and slight soreness. I doubt you'll be in very much pain afterwards, as every doctor will give you access to pain killers in the initial recovery period.

I can understand why you're scared of the pain. Don't worry, you will be prescribed some kind of pain medication for the aftercare period. The compression garments you'll wear should also reduce some of the pain associated with the recovery period. If you're concerned that certain pain meds might not work for you or be strong enough, tell your plastic surgeon about your low pain threshold so that he/she can make a more accurate prescription for your needs. After my arm lift, I also found that alternating between ibuprofen and my prescription medication helped alleviate my pain when it came back too strong between doses.