How Long Are Arm Lift Scars? Plus 5 Other Questions You Have About Brachioplasty

As far as body parts go, the upper arms usually aren’t given special attention. But, if you have lost a significant amount of weight, have aging arms, or are plagued by the “batwing” gene, you may devote a lot of thought and energy to covering them up—or even avoid situations such as poolside lounging or yoga classes where bare arms are expected.

If you’ve been considering an arm lift but have questions or wonder if an arm lift is even worth pursuing, read on. We’ve answered some of the most common brachioplasty questions we receive here at Cosmetic Surgery of Las Vegas.

1. Do I need an arm lift or liposuction?

That depends entirely on your body, concerns, and goals. The primary purpose of an arm lift is to address loose, sagging skin. In contrast, liposuction is a fat reduction procedure.

If you have lost a significant amount of weight or have noticed increased skin laxity as you’ve gotten older, it’s likely that fat isn’t the problem—and liposuction will not tighten skin. In fact, removing additional fat may leave your skin looking droopier.

An arm lift is best-suited for those who are concerned about the appearance of sagging skin on the upper arms (“bat wings”) and hope to achieve a tighter, more toned appearance. On the other hand, upper arm liposuction can be a good choice for those who have good skin elasticity and want to slim their arms.

That being said, liposuction is often used in conjunction with an arm lift to further sculpt and contour the upper arms.

2. How much does an arm lift cost?

Typically, the price of arm lift surgery starts at $9,900. The full cost of your procedure will depend on the severity of your concerns and the most appropriate technique to address them. Your final price will include all of your appointments, your surgeon’s fee, use of the operating facility, OR team, anesthesiologist, and all equipment and dressings. When you get quotes for an arm lift, be sure you get an all-inclusive quote to account for all of these factors (some practices will mention or display the surgeon’s fee alone).

3. How big are arm lift scars?

In the past, arm lift was known for producing a scar running the length of your upper arm, causing some to wonder if the trade-off of a scar to achieve more shapely arms was worthwhile. However, technology, techniques, and scar care have all progressed to the point where arm lift scars can be greatly lessened in length or softened in appearance.

Dr. Pancholi employs the latest techniques to keep your incision as small as possible while still achieving optimal results:

For upper arm fullness with minimal or no excess skin, Dr. Pancholi can provide an excellent result using VASER liposuction alone to contour the arms. In this case, a very small incision made in the armpit is all that will be needed—and the resulting scar will be virtually undetectable.

If you have mild or moderate sagging, Dr. Pancholi can perform a modified arm lift procedure through a small, 2-3 inch incision in the natural crease of the armpit. This allows him to tighten the skin with a much smaller scar. It also reduces recovery time.

For excessive skin sagging, a traditional arm lift incision will be needed. Dr. Pancholi will need to address a considerable amount of loose skin to achieve a pleasing result, so a longer incision will be carefully placed along the inner arm. With proper scar care, the resulting scar should fade over time and will only be slightly visible when lifting your arms.

4. Is there a non-surgical arm lift?

There are a number of non-surgical skin-tightening technologies available. In fact, we routinely use Thermi skin tightening to help patients address mild sagging on the face and body. While those with very mild sagging on the upper arms may benefit from non-surgical treatment, more severe sagging and excess fat will need to be addressed surgically.

5. What is arm lift recovery like?

Arm lift recovery time will vary depending on the type of arm lift you had. For liposuction alone or a modified arm lift, most patients are back to non-strenuous work within only two to three days. It’s normal to still feel sore at this time, but discomfort is usually well-managed with over-the-counter pain relievers.

For a traditional arm lift, you can expect to be off work for around five to ten days, at which point you may still have some limited mobility and discomfort in the upper arm and around the incision site.

6. Do you have to wear compression garments after an arm lift?

Yes! To protect your results and aid in your initial healing, you will be placed in a special compression sleeve before heading home. Depending on your unique circumstances and the recommendations of your surgeon, you may need to wear your compression garment for at least a few weeks after your surgery.More questions about brachioplasty? We’d love to talk! Contact us today to schedule a private consultation with Dr. Pancholi to review your arm lift options.

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