ARMS and FABULOUS! – What to Know about Arm Lift Surgery

Arms Model photoTime to get rid of the “Batwings”?  Or, lift the “Drapes”?  Or, take some action to tame (what one child we know and love refers to as) “The Flabby”?

If you have upper arm skin and fat that still moves- after you’ve stopped moving, you’ve probably already had some thoughts about how to reduce, and tighten it up. There are several approaches, among them surgery- in the form of an Arm Lift.


Photo by: Dr. Lepore Before Arm Lift

Photo by: Dr. Lepore
Before Arm Lift

The first step is to identify the extent of your problem. No one is suggesting that surgery is the appropriate step for everyone, or even for most people.

  • Exercise and weight reduction. This is the most obvious place to start. If you’re not extremely overweight, and are noticing that those few extra pounds, and extra years are showing up as soft, loose, drooping skin on your upper arms, this could be your solution. Learning a few exercises targeted at the muscle groups in the arms, can do wonders. Working out with weights (even light ones) produces physical and cosmetic benefits.This is something you can easily do at home, if you want to tone and tighten.
  • Laser treatments. There are several laser treatments that can be used effectively to reduce fat in the upper arms. Combined with an exercise program, these are very effective methods for many people, with small or moderate amounts of arm fat.


Photo by Dr. Lepore After Arm Lift

Photo by Dr. Lepore
After Arm Lift

You’ve watched your diet, you’ve joined the gym (you know the muscles are in there, but can’t see them), maybe you’ve even tried some machine-assisted fat loss. But, you still think your arms are ‘flapping in the breeze.’ If it’s disturbing you a great deal, it could be time to investigate an Arm Lift, otherwise known as Brachioplasty.

You’ll be in good company. According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, arm lifts (in women) have increased by more than 4,000% (Yes, that’s 4-Thousand Percent) over the last decade! The “sleeveless” trend no doubt has something to do with the numbers. It’s a style that apparently has some staying power. Many women have also caught on to the fact that displaying toned arms, is one of the most slimming overall visual effects.

What’s Involved in Arm Lift Surgery?

  • You may be able to achieve the result you want through Liposuction alone. Liposuction is a surgical procedure, performed under general, or local anesthesia. Your surgeon will remove fat using a cannula, inserted through a small incision. Liposuction may be combined with Brachioplasty.
  • BrachioplastyVery often, extreme weight loss, or fluctuations in weight, along with the passage of time, will combine to produce sagging and drooping that cannot be corrected with exercise and diet.

Brachioplasty, or Arm Lift, is a surgical procedure in which excess skin and fat in the upper arms are removed, the tissue underneath is tightened, and the overlying skin is tailored to a new contour.

As with any surgery, the incisions made for an Arm Lift, cause a scar. The length of the incision will depend on your particular problem areas, and how much needs to be tightened and removed. Incisions can be made on the inside of the arm, back of the arm, or underside. Your Plastic Surgeon will talk with you about the placement of the incision, and counsel you on post-surgical scar care.


Be realistic, and practical. Please don’t walk in to your consultation waving a photograph of the “Celebrity Arms” you want to have. Those are someone else’s arms. Someone who has probably spent a great many hours (or years) in a gym, with a trainer, a controlled nutrition plan, and the genes she (or he) has inherited from someone – with great arms!

Your post-surgery arms, will be an improved version of your arms, and soon, ready for toning exercises that will improve them even more.

The degree of change- will depend on the initial problem. The extreme weight loss patient sees a remarkable difference, while a patient needing less extensive fat and skin removal, will have a more subtle result.

Arm Lift results will be obvious immediately after surgery. Our Arm Lift patients tell us the procedure has improved their daily lives, self-image, and fashion choices!

[Dr. Vincent Lepore, along with Drs. Benjamin Maser and Steven Bates, are  Board Certified Plastic Surgeons in San Jose,  performing Arm Lift surgery, and a full range of Cosmetic Plastic Surgery and Reconstructive Plastic Surgery. Please call our office at (408) 356-4241, to schedule a consultation.]

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