Also known as an arm lift. If you're tired of that loose, floppy arm skin from weight loss, get your arms back with this procedure.

About the procedure

A brachioplasty more commonly known as an “arm-lift”, is an operation performed to remove excess skin and fat from the upper arm. Aging and weight loss can contribute to sagging of arm skin, which is most noticeable with arm elevation.

For many people in Tacoma and Puyallup, losing weight is only the first step in the pursuit of the ideal figure. Sometimes (especially among those whose skin has lost elasticity due to age or excessive stretching) the hanging skin that remains isn’t exactly what the person who invested so much time and work into getting in shape had in mind.

Who is a candidate for a brachioplasty?

Patients who have significant skin laxity localized to the upper arms from weight loss. Patients typically are not candidates for liposuction and other skin tightening devices such as Renuvion. Patients also must be comfortable with a long linear scar on their upper arms that will be noticeable to others.

What else can you tell me about the procedure?

To reshape and tone the arm skin, Dr. Patel usually makes an incision along the inside of the arm, extending from the underarm area (armpit) to the elbow. Scars are usually hidden while arms are resting at one’s side.  Liposuction is often added to this procedure to improve final shape and contour. Depending on skin excess and elasticity, liposuction alone may provide sufficient improvement.

What should I know about taking care of myself after the procedure?

Dr. Patel performs arm lifts under general anesthesia as an outpatient procedure. We instruct arm lift patients to wear a compression garment for several weeks post operatively to continue to maintain the contour that Dr. Patel created. Light arm movement is encouraged soon after surgery but strenuous upper body activity is limited for several weeks after surgery. Patients may drive and return to work once they discontinue narcotic pain medicine.

Important notes about liposuction and renuvion to the arms.

Some patients may not require a brachioplasty but still dislike the appearance of their upper arms due to excess subcutaneous fat in the upper arms, which is resistant to diet and exercise. They may be an appropriate candidate for liposuction and Renuvion. Renuvion is a device that helps with soft tissue contraction. Appropriate candidates are at or near their normal weight and desire change in the contour of their arms or liposculpture. Liposuction of the arms is intended to produce a permanent improvement in the contour and proportion of the arm. A more flattering shape to the arm out of clothing is another goal of liposculpture.

Liposuction is done on an outpatient basis. General anesthesia is used for safety and comfort. Small suction tubes (cannulas) are inserted through very small incisions at the elbow and armpit area where they will be inconspicuous. Fat is then removed by applying suction to the cannula. Renuvion is then applied to the deep tissues to provide additional soft tissue contraction.

How to take care of yourself after liposuction and renuvion to the arms.

Patients go home with a compression sleeve garment covering the treated areas. Compression is advised for at least month to reduce the swelling and to promote skin shrinkage and contouring. Initial discomfort is controlled with oral medication. Bruising and swelling typically subside within two to four weeks. The final result takes shape over the course of two to three months.