Arm Lift

An arm lift is also called a Brachioplasty. It is a cosmetic surgical procedure that improves the appearance of the under portion of your upper arms. During an arm lift, excess skin and fat are removed from between the armpit and the elbow. The remaining skin is then placed back over the newly-positioned contours to create a more toned look.

As you grow older, the skin on your upper arms changes. It sags and becomes loose. If you have undergone significant weight loss, this can also cause the undersides of your upper arms to droop. While exercise can improve and strengthen muscle tone in your upper arm, it cannot get rid of the excess skin that has lost elasticity.

You may choose to undergo an arm lift if the undersides of your upper arms are sagging. An arm lift can also help boost your self-image. However, an arm lift is not for everyone. Your doctor may caution you against an arm lift if you are significantly overweight, have frequent changes in your weight, or have a medical condition that interferes with wound healing.

Dr. S. Suma is a plastic, cosmetic, and reconstructive surgeon who is skilled at performing an arm lift. She will advise you as to whether this procedure is right for you after speaking with you in great detail. She will work with you before, during, and after the surgery so that your recovery is relatively quick and painless.

Before your Arm Lift

You should consult with your surgeon prior to your arm lift. In fact, you can visit and talk to her as many times prior to the surgery as you wish. During the initial consult, your surgeon will likely take your detailed medical history. She will ask you about current and past medical conditions if any. She will ask you about any medicines or supplements you may be taking, as well as about any surgeries that you may have had.

Besides taking a detailed medical history, your surgeon will also perform a detailed physical exam. She will examine the undersides of your upper arms and then discuss your treatment options with you. Your doctor will also take photographs of your upper arms prior to your surgery.

It is really important to discuss your expectations about the surgery with your surgeon. You should explain to her why you want the procedure and what you expect from it. You should also clearly understand the benefits and the risks, including possible scarring.

If you are a smoker, your doctor will ask you to stop smoking for several weeks prior to surgery. This is because smoking decreases blood flow in the skin and can delay healing. Your doctor may also ask you to stop taking certain medications, such as aspirin-based medications, certain anti-inflammatory drugs, and blood-thinners. These increase bleeding and may interfere with your recovery.

During your Arm Lift

An arm lift can be done in a hospital or in an outpatient surgical facility. Sometimes the procedure is done with general anesthesia and sometimes with local anesthesia and sedation. Your surgeon will choose the option that is best for you.

Your surgeon will make incisions on the undersides of your upper arms. The length and pattern of the incisions depend on how much skin needs to be removed. After making the incisions, your surgeon will tighten your underlying tissues and secure them with stitches. In case there is a lot of fat on your underarms, your surgeon will use liposuction to remove fat. Your skin will then be used as a cover over the new contours and excess skin will be removed. Stitches or surgical tape will be used to close the incisions.

You may have several options when it comes to the type of Brachioplasty you will need. Some of the different types are Liposuction, Limited-incision Brachioplasty, Standard Brachioplasty, and Extended Brachioplasty. Your surgeon will discuss and choose the Brachioplasty option that is right for you.

Sometimes, your surgeon will use a combination of procedures. Your Brachioplasty procedure may take one to three hours to complete, but may also take longer, depending on the extent of the procedure. You should discuss all of this with your surgeon prior to the surgery.

Precautions and Procedures before and after your Arm Lift

Your doctor may not only recommend that you stop smoking, alcohol, and certain medications prior to surgery, but may also recommend certain other lifestyle and dietary changes. You should follow all precautions and procedures recommended by your surgeon before and after surgery.

You will be placed in a compression garment or wrap immediately after surgery. You should wear this exactly as directed. You should arrange for someone to be with you for at least 24 hours after surgery. You should also ask for help in case you experience dizziness or light-headedness post-surgery.

You should drink only liquids for the first few hours after surgery. You can then advance slowly to small, light meals. If you experience nausea or vomiting, call your doctor, because excess vomiting can cause bleeding under your skin.

You should try to sit and walk slowly after your surgery. A balance of rest and activity will speed up your recovery. You may also have mild to moderate pain and discomfort. Your doctor will prescribe pain medication to address this. Your pain and discomfort should subside within 48 hours. If not, call your surgeon immediately.

You should also experience some bruising and swelling. To minimize swelling you should sleep with your arms elevated with pillows for about two weeks post-surgery. You will need at least two weeks or more to heal completely following your Brachioplasty.

During the first week, you should do activities that raise your blood pressure, as these could cause excess bleeding at the operative site. You should also not subject your incisions to excess abrasion, force, or motion during healing. Walking is the safest exercise, especially during the first-week post-surgery.

You should avoid exercises that stress the operative site for at least four weeks after your surgery. You can most likely, resume cardiovascular activities, such as riding a stationary bike or brisk walking. You should avoid heavy lifting, contact sports, and jogging for at least six weeks after your surgery. You should consult with your surgeon before you resume your exercise and work routine.

Arm Lift Result

The results of your arm lift will last for many years, provided your weight does not fluctuate. However, your body will continue to age and this applies to the skin of your underarms as well. This may result in loose skin in the future, which can be addressed with additional surgery.

For the best results, you should continue to consult with your cosmetic surgeon after your surgery. You should ensure that your follow-up diligently with her, especially if you notice any changes in your upper arms at the site of the surgery. You should also not hesitate to contact your surgeon with any questions, doubts, or concerns that you may have.

Dr. S. Suma is a cosmetic surgeon who will not only answer any and all questions you may have but will be an empathetic listener and communicator. She will address all of your doubts and will work with you before, during, and after surgery for the best Brachioplasty result. So, if you are considering an arm lift, do consult with Dr. S. Suma, knowing that you are in the best hands possible!

To know more about Arm Lift surgery, as well as the other cosmetic and reconstructive surgery procedures that Dr. S. Suma performs, you can get in touch with her at +91 86 86 042 042 or email her at

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