Massive weight loss can lead to excess skin and fat along the arms. The main complaint is the inability to wear sleeveless clothing bathing suits. In some cases the excess skin is so extensive that it causes chafing and irritation and interferes with most physical activities. A Brachioplasty or arm lift is the procedure that firms and tightens the arms by removing the excess skin and contouring the arms with liposuction as needed. There are different techniques of arm lift depending on the amount of skin and fat to be removed. If the loose skin is mainly situated near the armpit it may be possible to tighten the arms and limit the scar to the armpit or only have a short scar along the inner arm. The majority of massive weight loss patients have more extensive skin laxity with a wide area of extra skin extending from the armpit to the elbow. Dr. Polynice pays special attention the incision in order to obtain the best possible scar once healed. He handles the tissue delicately during the surgery and only uses absorbable sutures placed internally, which makes for a nicer almost imperceptible scar.
The procedure may take 2 to 3 hours depending on the amount of skin to be removed and the amount of contouring to be done. Normally patients can expect to return to their normal activities or work by 7 to 10 days. Strenuous physical activities or working out should be postponed until 3 to 4 weeks after surgery. If you like to learn more about the different arm lift procedures and find out which one would suit you best please call out office or go online to schedule your private consultation with Dr. Polynice.