An arm lift, or brachioplasty, is a surgical procedure that removes or reduces excess sagging or drooping skin from your arms giving a firmer, toned appearance.
As people age or weight fluctuates, the skin can lose its natural elasticity and result in an aesthetically unpleasant effect.
Candidates for an Arm Lift
Arm lift surgery can be performed on many types of patients. Both men and women of normal weight with more excess skin than fat are good candidates for brachioplasty. It is ideal for people who have lost large amounts of weight, but whose skin has not conformed to their new body shape. You may also consider an arm lift if:
- You have lost the weight you desire, but are left with redundant underarm skin
- You have significant upper arm skin laxity due to aging
- You are a healthy individual with no medical conditions that could impair healing or increase surgery risks
- You are a non-smoker
- You are committed to a healthy diet and lifestyle and have realistic expectations
Techniques and Scaring
There are several approaches to arm lift surgery, and we will tailor your procedure to your individual needs. We can typically remove extra skin near the armpit throughout an incision hidden in the armpit. For patients with extensive extra upper arm skin, which is common for those who have lost a lot of weight, the incision will run from the elbow through the armpit and onto the side of the chest. After removing excess skin from the arms, the incisions are closed with sutures.
Scarring will not be noticeable as the incisions are made on the undersides of the arms. Depending on the type of arm lift performed, the scar length can vary. We do recommend medical grade scar products that can help minimize the appearance of the scar and there are other laser treatments that can help as well. There are three types of arm lifts performed at El Paso Cosmetic Surgery.
Short Scar Brachioplasty: the incision is significantly shorter than a standard brachioplasty and is well concealed in the armpit without extension down the length of the arm.
Standard Brachioplasty: an incision is made from elbow to armpit.
Extended Brachioplasty: extending the brachioplasty incision from the elbow to the armpit and continuing through the lateral chest wall to completely remove this fold of tissue.
Arm Lift Recovery and Results
Arm lift recovery can range depending on the patient. The estimated recovery time is 2-3 weeks without any complications. Patients who have an arm lift may have restrictions on the range of motion for 2-3 weeks because movements that stress the incisions can risk for opening of the suture line. Dr. Sozer or Dr. Phillips does not recommend the use of a garment with arm lift procedures.
Most patients, depending on their employment, may return to work within 10 days.
Full results should be seen within 3-6 months after surgery. It’s important to know that your body will change with age. The appearance of your arms will change too. Although the outcomes of a Brachioplasty are generally permanent, any significant weight gain or loss, as well as the normal influences of aging can cause changes in your appearance
Risks and Complications
All surgery has risks and potential complications. Although the risks are not common, it is important that you understand these potential complications and know that no surgeon can offer risk-free surgery or guarantee of perfect result. Your surgeon will discuss any possible risks in detail during your consultation and will be sure to answer any questions or concerns that may arise.
Arm lift procedures are considered an outpatient surgery and are performed under general anesthesia. Our surgical center, El Paso Cosmetic Surgical Center, is in our West El Paso state-of-the-art facility which offers a comfortable and private setting. El Paso Cosmetic Surgical Center has been certified by the American Association for Accreditation of Ambulatory Surgery Facilities. This is a voluntary program of certification, meaning that at El Paso Cosmetic Surgery we choose to have our plastic surgery center inspected to ensure excellence and quality care to our plastic surgery patients. Only those facilities that meet the most stringent requirements for patient care, cleanliness, and equipment are accredited by the AAAASF.
The next step is to schedule your consultation. During your consultation, Board Certified Plastic Surgeon Dr. Sozer or Dr. Phillips will evaluate you and discuss all your questions, concerns and desires before undergoing surgery so you can have realistic expectations. You may call our office at (915) 351-1116 to schedule your consultation or may fill out our “Schedule Your Consultation” tab and someone will contact you to make that appointment. Experience the Science of Beauty.