skip to Main Content

Arm Lift

An Arm lift  or Brachioplasty is a procedure used to remove excess skin from upper arms and lateral portion of the upper chest wall

The aim of an arm lift surgery is to reshape the contour of your upper arm, axilla or armpit and the chest wall (where necessary) so that no excess tissue is visible following the procedure.

Scars from the operation are well hidden when the arms are by the side and patient satisfaction rates are high.

You’ll enjoy personalised care and attention at a hospital close to you with a comprehensive five-year structured follow-up programme and fully BAAPS and BAPRAS accredited surgeon.

Arm Lift Surgery - before and after


Overview of Arm Lift Surgery

  • Duration – 1.5 to 2 hours
  • Anaesthesia – General
  • Hospital Stay – Day case or overnight
  • Full Recovery – 6 weeks

Arm Lift Surgery – What’s involved?

Liposuction is used to remove any excess subcutaneous fat from the inner and posterior aspects of the upper arm to help achieve an ideal contour. The additional slack skin is then excised so that the skin is tightened and the shape of the arm becomes more youthful.

To achieve optimal results the incision usually needs to be carried into the axilla or armpit, so that the excess tissue here can also be removed (this helps to shape the upper part of the arm). This often has the added benefit of removing the armpit hair and sweat glands!

How long does arm lift surgery take?

Arm lift surgery time varies depending on the amount of excess skin and subcutaneous fat to be removed. Typically it takes 1½ to 2 hours but in cases of massive weight loss it can take up to 3 hours to perform.

How long is the recovery process?

Typically, the incisions take 2 weeks to heal, though the areas in the armpit can sometimes take a little longer to heal completely. Your incisions will normally be sealed with surgical glue on top of the stitches so the wound itself will be waterproof, and you should be able to take a shower after a couple of days.

You can return to light activities (as pain permits) after one to two weeks. However, strenuous activities should be avoided for six weeks following the operation to allow sufficient time for incision wound strength to reach levels where wound dehiscence (splitting) is unlikely.

Driving is usually safe by two weeks, but it is important that you feel you will be able to safely perform an emergency stop prior to getting back behind the wheel.

Arm Lift Scars – What do the scars look like?

The scar typically runs from the inside of the elbow to the inside of the armpit (upper part of the chest wall). It is placed in the groove between the biceps and the triceps muscles and so is well hidden.

How long before you see the final results of an Arm Lift?

You should see the final results of your arm lift in 6 months, but it can take 12 months for arm lift scars to fully fade.

The change in the contour of the arm will be apparent immediately following the procedure however there will be residual swelling from the liposuction that will take nine months to disappear. The scar is likely to be red for 9 to 12 months following the operation – the redness fades as the scar matures.

Meet Anthony Macquillan – Plastic Surgeon

Arm lift Surgeon Bristol - Anthony Macquillan

If you’ve decided to have cosmetic surgery, you’ll need a surgeon with the appropriate training, skills and experience to carry out your procedure.

It’s important to talk to your surgeon about what you want to change and why.

Anthony specialises in aesthetic surgery; he is registered with BAAPS, a specialist register of Plastic Surgeons maintained by the General Medical Council.

He is nationally acknowledged for providing outstanding medical care and achieving results that meet or exceed patients’ hopes and expectations.