Brachioplasty (Arm Lift)
The appearance of loose skin or increased weight on the upper arm, which is a common occurrence with ageing, can be a concern for many women. Sometimes there is simply too much tissue or it may be out of proportion to the upper arm thickness. Brachioplasty is surgery that addresses this. Arm lift surgery is designed to remove the excessive tissue and sculpt the remainder of the arm into a better shape.
During your initial consultation, after review of your general health and medical history, you will be asked to point out areas of concern. Your weight and height will be recorded and photographs taken as part of your confidential medical records. Your weight stability during the pre-consultation period will be noted. A fundamental aspect of any surgical journey is the establishment of an understanding between patient and surgeon with regard to mutual expectations.
Once surgery is planned, you will be asked to stop any medications that may increase the risk of postoperative bleeding. These include herbal remedies and supplements, and you should stop taking them at least 2 weeks prior to surgery. You should then wait at least a week after surgery before recommencing them. Smokers are encouraged to cease smoking at least 3–6 weeks prior to surgery and to abstain for at least 3–6 weeks following surgery.
On the day of surgery Dr Farhadieh will use a marking pen to outline the area to be removed or sculpted and will show you where the incision will be made. Any remaining questions will be answered at this time. Our anaesthetist will discuss the anaesthetic process and postoperative pain relief with you.
Brachioplasty may be combined with other procedures. These often include liposculpture of the arm and/or other sites. Your incisions will be designed to be in the least visible part of the arm. The scars will gradually fade with time, especially in the first year after surgery. Depending on the planned amount of tissue to be removed, you may require an incision along your upper arm extending into and beyond your armpit. Local anaesthetic will reduce any postoperative discomfort.
After the operation you will be taken to recovery and afterwards transferred to the ward or discharged, depending on the extent of your surgery. During the initial postoperative phase your arms will feel tight, but this will soon subside. If you are admitted overnight, there may be a drain in place, which is often removed prior to your discharge the following day. During the first 2 weeks after the operation you may see bruising at the site of surgery. This will disappear shortly. It is a good idea to avoid driving or doing heavy exercise during this time period. You should, however, be as active as possible, walking and doing light exercise.
Your postoperative follow-up will be 10–14 days after surgery. You are encouraged to wear your compression garments for 4–6 weeks following your surgery. This will help to reduce swelling.
Although there are risks with any surgery, fortunately these are not very common with brachioplasty. Dr Farhadieh will discuss the risks with you at length during your consultation.
During each step of your procedure from the time of your first consultation to your long-term postoperative follow-up, Dr Farhadieh and his team will be with you. We are available to explain any issues or simply to talk with. We remain committed to our patients’ care and firmly believe that maintaining an excellent relationship with our patients is one of the most important foundations in delivering the highest level of care.
‘Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding, you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner.’
Frequently Asked Questions
Will I require a general anaesthetic for the procedure?
Yes, this procedure is best carried out under general anaesthetic. It is a day procedure and involves a general anaesthetic and infiltration of local anaesthetic into the surgical areas as part of the surgery, this helps to address some of the discomfort associated with the surgery.
Is the surgery painful?
There is some discomfort associated with surgery. Most patients report a ‘tightness’ rather than pain, due to the excellent pain control regime we use, which includes local anaesthetic for the immediate postoperative period as well as powerful analgesics.
Will I have liposculpture and liposuction as part of the procedure as well?
Depending on the extent of the procedure liposculpture and liposuction may be required for optimal aesthetic outcome.
When will I be able to resume normal activity?
Most of the swelling will settle in the first 7–10 days. You will be able to return to work after this time and resume most normal activities. The wounds should not be put under duress in the first few weeks to allow the skin at the incision sites to regain its strength.
Where will the scars be placed?
Depending on the amount of redundant tissues, arm lift surgery can be minor or extensive. The incisions are camouflaged along normal skin creases and where natural shadows fall. Although there will always be a scar at any incision site, with good design and artistry the scars will fade and will be barely noticeable to the untrained eye.
What will my follow up include?
Dr Farhadieh believes that the relationship between doctor and patient is sacred and privileged. Our practice is based on compassion, honesty, transparency and, above all, patient welfare. We pride ourselves on making sure that you feel supported at all times. We will be available during all stages of your journey and will schedule short-, medium- and long-term follow-up appointments as part of our overall practice.