Body Procedures » Upper Arm Lift a.k.a. Brachioplasty

Arm Lift Brachioplasty by Seattle Plastic Surgeon

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BrachioplastyUpper Arm Lift a.k.a. Brachioplasty 

Working out every day at one of Seattle’s many excellent gyms may help build up the upper arm muscles but it will not tighten lax skin. The upper arm is often a problem area for even very fit middle aged women and individuals who have had major weight fluctuations. Brachioplasty is a procedure that can tighten the loose skin of the upper arm and remove some of the excess fat.

Quick facts:

  • Costs: $7500 – $8500 depending on the length of surgery.
  • Post-operative pain: quite a bit. 
  • Time in compression garment:  3 weeks.
  • Time off work or school: 1 – 2 weeks depending on occupation.
  • Time off driving the kids to lacrosse:  1  week or once you are off narcotic pain meds.
  • Time off the gym:  4 weeks.
  • Time off the slopes:  6  weeks.
  • Time off the kite board: 8 weeks.
  • Time off house work:  forever!   Just kidding, usually 3 – 6 weeks.
  • How longdoes it last:  forever unless you have significant weight change.
  • Patient satisfaction:   high despite the long scar.

A few before and afters are worth a thousand words.  Check out my photo gallery.

The fine print:

Brachioplasty is accomplished by excision of a long wedge of excess skin and fat from the medial arm, from the elbow to the axilla (underarm area). The resultant scar is located on the inner aspect of the upper arm. Although good healing is expected, this scar can sometimes be quite noticeable with sleeveless clothing.  For reasons unknown to mere mortals, the brachioplasty scar take a long, long time to settle down – sometimes up to two years.

For some patients with mild skin excess, a shorter incision can be used and sometimes the incision and resulting scar can be limited to the underarm area.  Patients who are good candidates for this “mini” brachioplasty are few and far between.

All patients wear a compressive bolero for about two to three weeks after surgery help minimize swelling and bruising and help promote good healing. I have patients tape their incisions for about six months which really helps the quality of the surgical scars.

Some patients benefit from liposuction alone of the upper arm.  These patients usuall have chubby upperarms and good skin tone and a history of stable weight.   The liposuction is done circumferentially in both the deep and the superficial layer of fat. This promotes some retraction and tightening of the skin. Following liposuction of this area, patients need to wear compressive sleeves for 4 to 6 weeks to promote good healing.

At your initial consultation, I will examine your arms and check your skin tone and decide  which of these procedures would be best for you. A written price quote will be given at this time.

Upper arm procedures are done under a general anesthetic in my AAAASF certified Seattle office operating room or at Seattle Surgery Center which is located one block my office. You may go home the same day as your surgery. Most patients take a week off of work and most are able to return to normal activities in 4 to 6 weeks.

Also visit What’s New> Cast Liposuction

If you would like to schedule a consultation, please give my office a call at 206 467-1101.