Achieve slimmer, tighter-looking arms with an Arm Lift
Toning your arms by exercise alone can be highly difficult if you have excess skin in the area that houses stubborn fatty tissue. If you’ve recently lost weight that resulted in having loose muscles and skin, an arm lift can tighten the underlying muscles and excise the sagging skin, creating a tightened, toned profile.
This surgical procedure can be a great step in your fitness plan, as muscles that are loosened and stretched can be ineffective at building mass and becoming stronger. Cosmetic surgeon Dr. Whitney Florin can work with you and your aesthetic goals to plan an incision that will give you the best results with the most subtlety as your incisions heal.
An arm lift (brachioplasty) is a cosmetic procedure that addresses loose skin and excess fat on the arms due to weight loss or changes in skin elasticity over time. This procedure removes excess skin and contours the upper arms for a more youthful appearance. People seek an arm lift if they have trouble finding clothes with sleeves that fit properly or are embarrassed to show their off their upper arms. Others seek arm lift surgery if they feel like the size of their upper arms does not match the rest of their body.
For patients who only have mild skin laxity (or looseness), we can avoid a surgical arm lift procedure and obtain good results with non-surgical skin tightening techniques alone. Otherwise, arm lift patients will need an incision, which can require general anesthesia.
Dr. Florin is usually able to get the best results with a combination of procedures; for an arm lift, this means liposuction to get rid of stubborn fat deposits and/or incisions to remove excess skin.
Vaser: Vaser is ultrasonic energy that is delivered in a minimally invasive technique through tiny liposuction incisions. The energy from Vaser liquifies or melts your fat which makes the liposuction part of your surgery smoother and less traumatic on your body. Vaser is excellent at releasing scar tissue so it is a wonderful tool to use with patients that have had previous procedures to the arms, such as liposuction or CoolSculpting.
MicroAire power-assisted liposuction (PAL): MicroAire is Dr. Florin’s most common device of choice for liposuction procedures. Most liposuction that is performed now is power-assisted, meaning we use a device that rotates to help remove fat more efficiently and uniformly. This means less time under anesthesia and smoother, more even liposuction results.
Renuvion: Renuvion is an energy device that uses radiofrequency and plasma energy to target skin tightening. This device is one of the most powerful devices we have available for skin tightening in the upper arm area. It is a great option if you already have some looseness to your skin, or if we are treating an area that is more likely to have loose skin after liposuction (such as the upper arms). It may be used as a stand-alone procedure for a patient with a mild degree of skin looseness or it may be paired with an arm lift to help stimulate collagen and tighten the skin.
BodyTite: BodyTite is a minimally invasive liposuction device that uses radiofrequency to enhance skin tightening. It is similar to Renuvion in that it is also radiofrequency energy, but it differs in that it can be used in small areas such as the arms.
When liposuction alone isn’t enough to improve the appearance of your upper arms, it usually means you have enough excess skin that some of it needs to be trimmed away using an incision. Although this means you will be left with a scar of varying length in a fairly visible location, many patients are happy to trade this cosmetic flaw for trimmer, tighter arm tissue.
The length of your incision (and the resulting scar) depends on your anatomy and the amount of loose skin that you have. An arm lift incision is placed within the inner arm so that when your arms are by your sides, the incision is hidden. Dr. Florin will close your incisions meticulously so that you end up with a beautiful scar that will fade over time.
In addition, Dr. Florin will guide you on how to take care of your scars so that you can have the best possible outcome. You will start with scar cream or scar tape around six weeks after your surgery, continuing for at least one year after surgery.
Once you have scheduled your surgery date, you can start to prepare for what you will need during the healing process and follow Dr. Florin’s instructions for the days and weeks leading up to your arm lift, which may include not eating or drinking for 12 hours prior to the procedure. Smokers are asked to refrain from smoking six weeks before and after their procedure to ensure optimal healing. You may also be asked to avoid taking certain medications that may increase bleeding.
Dr. Florin has over a decade of cosmetic and plastic surgery experience and specializes in helping men and women find their confidence in achieving their ideal body. These body contouring procedures are performed at our state-of-the-art facilities with the help of our friendly medical staff who can ensure you feel calm, comfortable, and fully aware of what to expect from an arm lift.
Following your arm lift procedure, your arms will be wrapped to reduce swelling and support your new arm contours. This will stay on for about a week at which point you will transition to wearing a compression garment full time for at least six weeks. Most patients wear compression full time for up to 2-3 months and on an as-needed basis after that.
You can expect a mild to moderate amount of discomfort, which can be controlled with pain medication. Bruising and swelling in the treatment area is normal and will peak within the first 36-48 hours and then gradually subside over the next two weeks.
Dr. Florin recommends that you plan to take three weeks off work and two weeks off from driving. You will need help at home for up to two weeks after surgery. The first few weeks after an arm lift can be challenging as most people are not used to needing help to get up, shower, and get dressed. However, after about two weeks, most patients feel almost back to normal even if the results of the arm lift aren’t completely apparent yet.
You can start light exercise at around two weeks and more strenuous activity at around six weeks.
People who have arm lift surgeries enjoy a slimmer upper arm profile without any loose skin, making it easier to wear shirts of various sleeve lengths and boosting self-confidence.
Keep in mind that healing from an arm lift is a process and it takes time to see your final results. Most patients begin to appreciate their surgical results at about six to eight weeks after surgery as most of the surgical swelling has gone down at that point. However, there can be some residual swelling present for up to a year.
During your consultation, Dr. Florin will ensure you are educated about every step of your procedure and understand the steps to take in order to get the best results in the long term. We believe that educating patients thoroughly on their options and alternative plastic surgery procedures is the best way to build trusting relationships and achieve beautiful, natural results.
Dr. Florin encourages individuals to bring photos of previous arm lift patients who have a similar upper arm appearance to themselves prior to surgery to ensure you’re both on the same page for what you expect and what is achievable through an arm lift.
The best way to determine which body contouring procedure is best for you is through a consultation with Dr. Florin at the Gallery of Cosmetic Surgery. Dr. Florin can tell you all of the surgical and non-surgical options for enhancing the appearance of your arms, as well as answer all of your questions about your arm lift treatment plan. To schedule a consultation appointment, contact us by calling (949) 328-5588 or filling out our online form.
How do I know if it's the right time for an arm lift?
While only the patient can ultimately decide when its time for them to undergo surgery, there are some signs that it may be time to consider an arm lift. If you are experiencing loose skin that extends from the underarm area to the elbow due to weight loss or aging, and if you are willing to accept a scar in place for more shapelier arms, an arm lift may be right for you. During your consultation with Dr. Florin, you can discuss the procedure, as well as any questions that you may have.
What will arm lift scarring be like?
Arm lift scars will vary based on the amount of excess tissue that is removed, as well as the elasticity of your skin. During a standard arm lift, scarring is located on the inside of the arm and may extend from the underarm to just above the elbow. Generally, patients with excess arm skin are happy to exchange their loose skin for a scar.
How long will arm lift results last?
As long as your weight is stable, you can expect your arm lift results to last for many years. However, the aging process will still continue, which may alter results in the future. Nevertheless, arm laxity will still be less significant than before your arm lift surgery.
Dr. Whitney Florin is a top body and breast surgeon in the Newport Beach and Orange County area with experience. A maxillofacial surgeon and Diplomate of the American Board of Cosmetic Surgery and the American Board of Facial Cosmetic Surgery, she is particularly known for her incredible, natural-looking results. Dr. Whitney Florin is a bilingual cosmetic surgeon, speaking both English and Spanish. After years of studying under some of the cosmetic surgery worlds’ top minds, she has helped thousands of men and women love the way they look in the mirror. Dr. Whitney Florin specializes in Mommy Makeovers, Breast and Body Augmentation, Liposuction, Tummy Tucks, and Non-Surgical Rhinoplasty. She is a true artist that will help you love what you see in the mirror.
Call (949) 706-7776 or fill out our online form to schedule your complimentary consultation with us. Conveniently located near Fashion Island, the airport and the beach. Please visit us while you are out in the beautiful area of Newport Beach.