Underarm Flab: How to Get Rid of it

The area on the underside of the upper arms is a common place to gather excess fat, especially as we age. While you may be able to lose fat in this area, often times the process leaves behind excess skin which is permanent and causes some patients to feel self conscious when wearing short sleeves and tanks.

An “arm lift”, or brachioplasty, is a surgical procedure that removes the excess sagging skin and fat on the underarms. This relatively common procedure rids you of the localized pockets of fat in the upper arm region and tightens the underlying supportive tissues, thus defining the shape of the upper arm.

How does the drooping skin get there?

Fluctuations in weight, growing older, and heredity can cause your upper arms to have a drooping, sagging appearance. This drooping skin cannot be corrected through exercise or diet – it must be removed surgically.

female arm

How do I know if I am a good candidate for an arm lift?

Arm lift surgery may be right for you if the underside of your upper arms are sagging or appear loose and full due to excess skin and fat. The best candidates for arm lift surgery are in good health, have no active diseases or serious, pre-existing medical conditions. A brachioplasty is usually performed for cosmetic reasons, however sometimes if the sagging arm skin becomes so severe, it can restrict motion and interfere with the use of the arm, thus requiring surgery for functional purposes.

What is the process like?

An initial consultation is needed in order for your health history to be reviewed and the procedure to be explained in great detail. We will show you before and after pictures of patients, and all of your questions will be answered. Next, an evaluation of your arm contours, excess skin, fatty deposits and muscular tone will be performed prior to scheduling your surgery.

What does the procedure entail?

In preparation for surgery, the skin will be marked to give you the optimal shape and contour. During the surgery, we will remove fat and skin to give you the shape you want. Some fat is typically left to cover and protect nerves and arteries. After the excess fat and skin are removed, the arm is sutured closed and a drain inserted (in most cases).

We encourage our patients to refrain from smoking before and after the procedure, as this can affect healing. Instructions on what to eat and drink post-surgery will be given prior to the initial treatment, so you will have plenty of time to prepare. It is highly recommended that transport is arranged prior to surgery, as well as having someone to assist in daily activities during the healing process at home.

What about the results?

The great thing about brachioplasty is that the surgical site is inconspicuous and thus visual scarring is minimal. Our patients are delighted with the results, and eager to back into their sleeveless wear again.

Call us today at 210-496-2639 to discuss arm lift surgery and other cosmetic options!