What is brachioplasty?

An arm lift, or brachioplasty, is a surgical procedure that:

  • Reduces excess sagging skin that droops downward
  • Tightens and smoothes the underlying supportive tissue that defines the shape of the upper arm
  • Reduces localized pockets of fat in the upper arm region
  • Fluctuations in weight, growing older, and heredity can cause your upper arms to have a drooping, sagging appearance. This is a condition that cannot be corrected through exercise.

Arm lift surgery may be right for you if the underside of your upper arms are sagging or appear loose and full due to excess skin and fat.

Who is it for?

In general, arm lift candidates include:

  • Adults with significant upper arm skin laxity
  • Adults of any age whose weight is relatively stable and who are not significantly overweight
  • Healthy individuals without medical conditions that impair healing or increase risk of surgery
  • Non-smokers
  • Individuals with a positive outlook and realistic expectations

Pre-op essentials

In preparing for arm lift surgery, you may be asked to:

  • Get lab testing or a medical evaluation
  • Take certain medications or adjust your current medications
  • Stop smoking
  • Avoid taking aspirin, anti-inflammatory drugs and herbal supplements as they can increase bleeding

Be sure to arrange for someone to drive you to and from surgery, and to stay with you for at least the first night following surgery.

What to expect during surgery

During brachioplasty, an incision is made that typically runs from the elbow to the armpit. Excess skin, fat, and tissue is then removed. Although some scarring will always be visible, the surgeon will place the scar in the most inconspicuous location, which is on the inner arm toward the back.

An additional procedure that may be recommended by your surgeon is liposuction of the upper arms and armpits. For some patients with good skin quality, liposuction alone may meet their needs. This procedure can be used to decrease the bulk of excess fat along the lower border of the upper arm.

After Surgery

During your recovery from arm lift surgery, dressings or bandages may be applied to your incisions, and your arms may be wrapped in an elastic bandage or a compression garment to minimize swelling following surgery.

A small, thin tube may be temporarily placed under the skin to drain any excess blood or fluid.

You will be given specific instructions on how to care for the surgical site and drains, medications to apply or take orally to aid healing, specific concerns to look for, and when to follow up with us.

Remember there is nothing like a SCARLESS surgery! Scars can just be minimised with good surgical technique and good after care by the patient. Scars can be prevented to hypertrophy by using scar gels and if hypertrophied already, can be treated with Injection Triamcinolone injection, microneedling and/or CO2 lasers, all of which are available with us.

The contour results have to be maintained by the patient with diet control and exercise. Future pregnancies, medical disorders and certain drugs although can alter these results profoundly.

Risks of Abdominoplasty

Arm lift surgery risks include:

  • Anesthesia risks
  • Bleeding
  • Infection
  • Poor wound healing
  • Unsightly scarring
  • Fluid accumulation (seroma)
  • Damage to deeper structures such as nerves, blood vessels and muscles
  • Fatty tissue under the skin might die (fat necrosis)
  • Numbness or other changes in skin sensation
  • Pain, which may persist
  • Sutures may not absorb, but spontaneously surface through the skin, causing irritation, drainage and redness
  • Possible need for revisional surgery

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