Home- Brachioplasty (Arm Lift)

Brachioplasty (Arm Lift)

What is a brachioplasty?

A brachioplasty is an arm lift surgery done to tighten loose upper arm skin. It improves the contour and shape of upper arms.

Who is suitable for a brachioplasty?

If you are concerned by loose or hanging skin on your upper arms, you may be suitable for a brachioplasty.

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If you are planning to lose weight or are overweight, it may not be the right time to have a brachioplasty. Brachioplasty is body contouring or reshaping surgery NOT weight loss surgery. If you smoke or have significant health problems, this will need to be assessed and you may be advised to wait or not to have a brachioplasty.

The procedure

There are variations depending on your individual anatomy and goals. The standard surgery is done under general anaesthesia. An incision is made along the inner arm and loose skin is carefully removed. Sometimes this extends into the axilla (arm pit) or chest side wall. The skin is restitched in a tighter way with a smoother contour. Drains are not routinely used. Stitches are usually absorbable.

Combination surgery

Brachioplasty can be done on its own or in combination with other procedures. Common combinations include brachioplasty with liposuction, breast surgery and other body contouring procedures.

Duration of surgery

1 to 2 hours depending on the extent of surgery. If other procedures are planned at the same time, the overall surgery time is longer.

After surgery

You will have tapes on the incisions. You will need to wear a support garment for 6 weeks. Smaller brachioplasties can be day case procedures. Larger brachioplasty surgery may require one night in hospital. You can shower with care after 48 hours.


You will be advised to take care raising your arms the first week or two. On average 2 to 3 weeks off work are needed. No heavy lifting or strenuous activity is allowed for 6 weeks. Some forms of exercise can be restarted at 4 weeks. but most exercise is restarted at 6 weeks. Driving is not allowed until you are safe to perform an emergency stop.


Unfortunately, complications can occur after all surgery and you need to be aware of this. Ms Nugent will do her utmost to reduce your risk as much as she can. This includes the health and procedure advice she gives you before surgery, the care and precautions she takes during surgery and the advice she gives you after surgery. Some of the complications that can happen include slow healing, infection, bleeding, poor scarring, more visible scarring than expected, asymmetry, pain, numbness or sensitivity in the skin, contour irregularities, seroma (fluid build-up), clots in the legs and lungs and persistent puckering at the scar ends.

Successful surgery

Most patients who undergo brachioplasty surgery are very pleased with their results and describe it as a transformative procedure. Success depends on being prepared for your surgery, choosing the right procedure, the surgery itself and recovering well. All steps in the journey are crucial!

More detail

Download the detailed information booklet on this page to read more and book a consultation to discuss your individual circumstances with Ms Nugent!