Plastic Surgeon & Medical Spa Serving Norman, Edmond, Oklahoma City & Nearby Central Oklahoma
An arm lift, or brachioplasty, is a procedure that designed to tone and define the upper arms by removing excess skin and fat, enabling an improved contour and dramatic reduction of “flabby” or loose skin between the elbow and shoulder. While suitable to address a loss of shape following massive weight loss, arm lift surgery may be ideal for anyone who feels desires a firmer and more appealing upper arm.
If you live in or around Oklahoma City and are considering arm lift surgery, please call Genesis Plastic Surgery & Medical Spa at 405-340-9949 to schedule a consultation with board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Jayesh Panchal.
Am I a Good Candidate for an Arm Lift?
If you have excess skin and fat over the inner and lower aspects of your arms, you may be a good arm lift candidate. Diet and exercise cannot always address stubborn fat deposits and will do very little to eliminate excess skin. Because it addresses both, arm lift surgery is ideal for men and women who have lost a significant amount of weight and are now dealing with sagging and loose skin in the upper arms.
Good arm lift candidates should be:
- In good physical and emotional health
- Prepared for a surgical procedure and recovery period
- Willing to follow post and preoperative instructions
During your initial visit, Dr. Panchal will ask about your medical history, which may impact your ability to have this surgery. There may be certain medications, supplements, and herbs that need to be avoiding in the time leading up to your surgery and, if you are a smoker, it is very important that you stop smoking prior to and long after your arm lift surgery. Nicotine will slow and complicate the healing process.
During your time in our care, we will provide you with all of the information and tools you need to reduce risks and speed healing after your arm lift procedure.
Arm Lift Surgery
To perform arm lift surgery, an incision will need to be made along the inner aspect of the arm. If you have only a small amount of excess skin, Dr. Panchal may recommend a smaller incision. If you have a more significant amount of loose skin, you will require a longer incision along the inner aspect of the arm. Dr. Panchal tries to limit the length of his incisions to mid-upper arm level so that you can still wear a short-sleeved shirt.
Once the incision is made, Dr. Panchal will remove excess skin and fat before closing the area in multiple layers. The final incision is closed with stitches underneath the skin. This minimizes the appearance of the scar to a point that is acceptable for most patients. These sutures will not need to be removed.
Unless you are having SmartLipo only, arm lift is performed under general anesthesia at outpatient surgical centers, such as Oklahoma Surgicare in Oklahoma City. SmartLipo is performed under local anesthesia in our Edmond office.
A complete arm lift surgery usually takes between two and two-and-one-half hours to perform depending on the amount of excess skin. During the planning phase of your procedure, Dr. Panchal will be able to give you more specifics about what you can expect.
After arm lift surgery, you may experience some pain for the first few days. Dr. Panchal will prescribe you pain medications to help ensure your comfort. You may also have some swelling and bruising after the arm lift. This should resolve on its own, but swelling can be reduced by wearing a compression garment for the first four to six weeks after surgery. Taking frequent short walks can also help stimulate blood flow and reduce postoperative swelling.
At about three weeks post-surgery, when the swelling has gone down significantly, you will start to see the results of your surgery. As the swelling continues to decrease, you will see the final results of your surgery.
You will need someone to assist you with getting up and walking around the house for the first two days after surgery, but most people are able to resume a majority of normal activities within one to two weeks. You can participate in aerobic exercise again after six weeks. During this time, you will return to our office for follow up visits at which Dr. Panchal will be able to help you determine when it is safe to resume more demanding and challenging activities.
Arm Lift Surgery Risks
There are always some risks and complications associated with any surgical procedure. Rarely, blood can collect at the incision site, which requires additional surgery. In a few cases, an infection at the incision site may occur. To reduce this risk, Dr. Panchal will prescribe you antibiotics to take before your arm lift surgery and for a few days after the surgery. The incision generally heals with a scar line that is not overtly visible.
It is possible to have a small collection of fluid in the arm (a seroma) after arm lift surgery, but these will generally resolve on their own. If not, a small needle may be needed to remove the collected fluid. Finally, the skin on your arm may be numb for four to six weeks after the arm lift surgery, but this will also resolve on its own.
Please remember, Smoking before or after surgery increases the risk for complications. It is important that you quit smoking at least six weeks before your arm lift and that you do not resume the habit for a minimum of six weeks after.
Why Choose Dr. Panchal
An experienced and board-certified plastic surgeon, Dr. Panchal takes time to customize each arm lift he performs. Careful to only remove the amount of fat and skin necessary for optimal results, Dr. Panchal takes special care, from the initial incision through the finalizing of the procedure, to guard against poor healing and wide scars.
For arm lift, Dr. Panchal makes the initial incision in the underarm area so that your arm has a well-contoured normal shape from top to bottom. This technique also minimizes visible scarring, making it ideal for both men and women who desire a better contoured and more defined upper arm.
If you live in or around Oklahoma City, please call 405-340-9949 to schedule a consultation at Genesis Plastic Surgery & Medical Spa or fill out an online contact form and our office will be in touch with you. With locations in Edmond and Norman, Dr. Panchal welcomes patients from all parts of Oklahoma.
What’s the Recovery Time for Arm Lift Surgery?
It takes two to three weeks to fully heal from an arm lift. While this is the general timeline, each patient’s body is unique and will take its own time to heal. The team at Genesis Plastic Surgery & Medical Spa will walk you through recovery to ensure you are completely healed according to your body’s needs.
Are There Any Risks Associated With Arm Lift Surgery?
As with any surgical procedure, there is a small risk of complications from anesthesia, excessive bleeding, and post-operative infection at the surgical site. If your arm lift incisions become infected, the team will help treat the issue and help you recover. They take every safety precaution possible to help ensure a swift and easy arm lift recovery.
Additional risks can be related to individual health factors. Your surgeon will discuss your risks with you before an arm lift.
Undesirable scarring is also a potential risk of arm lift surgery, but this can be minimized by closely following your surgeon’s aftercare instructions.
Can I Combine Arm Lift Surgery With Other Procedures?
Yes! It can be a great idea to combine arm lift surgery with other procedures, such as liposuction. Doing so can minimize your overall recovery time and help you get your desired results.
What Type of Scarring Can I Expect From Arm Lift Surgery?
Every patient’s body is different, so scarring does tend to vary among individuals. However, the surgeon takes every step possible to minimize the visibility of scarring after an arm lift. The average arm lift scar is a flat line from the incision. Patients who need longer incisions to perform their arm lift tend to have more noticeable scarring, but like all scars, these fade and become less visible with time.
How Long Do the Results of Arm Lift Surgery Last?
The results of an arm lift are extremely long-lasting — up to 10 years or more. As long as you maintain an active lifestyle and healthy weight after surgery, you can expect your arm lift to last for at least a decade. Further toning of the arms after surgery through dedicated exercise can help extend the results.