What is an Arm Lift?
An arm lift, also know as brachioplasty, improves the appearance of your arms by removing excess skin and fat. An arm lift will tighten and reshape your arms resulting in a smoother and more toned appearance. Heredity, natural aging, and changes in weight can cause your arms to droop and sag. Exercise can strengthen muscle but cannot address excess skin, fat, and loss of elasticity. If your arms appear saggy or loose, an arm lift from MidAmerica Plastic Surgery may be right for you.
Who may benefit from an arm lift?
An arm lift is performed to:
- Remove excess sagging skin and fat that hangs from arm.
- Smooth and tighten tissue in the arm.
- Define and shape the upper arm.
- Remove pockets of fat from the upper arm.
An arm lift may be right for you if:
- You have excess skin laxity.
- You are physically healthy.
- Your weight is stable.
- You do not smoke.
Before the Arm Lift Surgery
- Get lab testing or a medical evaluation, as needed.
- Take certain medications or adjust your current medications, as recommended.
- Stop smoking well in advance of your surgery.
- Avoid taking aspirin, anti-inflammatory drugs and herbal supplements as they can increase bleeding (if OK with your primary care physician. If you cannot stop please let us know).
The Day Of the Arm Lift Surgery
- Completed as an outpatient or with hospital stay depending on your particular needs.
- Nothing to eat or drink the day of surgery.
- You will need someone to drive you home and stay with you for the first 24 hours.
After the Arm Lift Surgery
Recovery is patient dependent.
Seek medical attention immediately if you have any of the following:
- Shortness of breath
- Chest pains, or unusual heart beats
Complications from the Arm Lift Surgery
As with any procedure there are risks. Fortunately, with brachioplasty, these risks are minimal. These include but are not limited to:
- Unfavorable scarring
- Bleeding (hematoma)
- Fluid accumulation
- Anesthesia risks
- Poor wound healing
- Skin loss
- Blood clots
- Numbness or other changes in skin sensation
- Skin discoloration and/or prolonged swelling
- Major wound separation
- Fatty tissue found deep in the skin might die (fat necrosis)
- Damage to deeper structures such as nerves, blood vessels, muscles, and lungs
- Pain, which may persist
- Deep vein thrombosis, cardiac and pulmonary complications
- Sutures may spontaneously surface through the skin, become visible or produce irritation that require removal
- Possibility of revisional surgery
Dr. Ryan Diederich is a board-certified plastic surgeon specializing in a range of aesthetic and reconstructive plastic surgery procedures at Mid-America Institute of Plastic & Cosmetic Surgery in Glen Carbon, IL. If you’re looking for a plastic surgeon east of St. Louis, you can schedule a consultation online schedule a consultation online, or call us at (618) 288-7855 to schedule an appointment.
For more information see the American Society of Plastic Surgery topic “Arm Lift”
*This article is intended as a guideline only. This is not intended as medical advice. There are no guarantees written or implied from the information presented here. Only a consultation can provide an appropriate evaluation and discussion regarding any procedure. Refer to your physician for medical decision making and advice.