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Arm Lift or Arm Tuck by Dr. Wolfeld in New York City

A brachioplasty, also known as "Arm Lift" or "Arm Tuck," is a procedure to remove redundant flabby and sagging skin folds of the upper arms and to restore the firmness of younger arms. Arm Lift or brachioplasty allows patients to once again enjoy arms that are firm, toned, and proportionate with the rest of their body. For some patients, the need to undergo a brachioplasty surpasses that of a tummy tuck because they are unable to find shirts that have wide enough arms, or are uncomfortable with showing their arms at all.  The popularity of the brachioplasty has increased along with the growing number of people who have lost massive amounts of weight either through dieting or bariatric surgery, such as gastric bypass, "stomach stapling," or lap-banding.

The arm lift procedure is most effective for patients who have lost weight and are close to their stable weight, but have trouble losing weight in their arms, or need a little tightening in the area.  An arm lift is often combined with other cosmetic procedures, such as liposuction, thigh lift, and a tummy tuck in order to sculpt the body and create a slimmer and more defined appearance.

Patients with minimal fat and no excess skin may be able to achieve effective results through liposuction alone.  Liposuction is a much less invasive procedure that suctions out excess fat through tiny incisions.  A minimal incision can also be placed near the axilla (armpit) for patients with minimal extra skin, which helps reduce scarring and recovery times. 

For patients with a significant amount of excess skin and fat, a standard arm lift incision is made on the inside of the arm that extends from the axilla (armpit) to the elbow.  Fat and excess skin is completely removed.  First, the deep layers of the wound are closed and then the more superficial and finally the skin wound is closed with dissolvable sutures. Before closure, drains are placed and exit the skin through small holes either in the axilla or near the elbow. The final scar is usually a T-shaped line with the long limb going along the length of the arm, and the short limb extending across the armpit.  The drains may remain in place for a few days.  Following surgery, your arm will be placed in a special compression garment to help the newly sculpted skin adhere to the underlying tissue and to reduce swelling.

An arm lift is performed on an outpatient basis under general anesthesia.  The procedure takes about two hours to perform, and patients can usually return home on the same day.  Recovery takes three to four weeks. During this time, you will be advised to avoid lifting and strenuous movements. Dr. Wolfeld will also tell you to keep your arm elevated with pillows to minimize discomfort while you heal. Scars will remain visible, but fade for up to two years. Many of Dr. Wolfeld’s patients believe that the removal of excess fat and skin outweighs the appearance of any scarring. Most patients can return to work after one week, unless it involves strenuous physical activity.

The results of this procedure are visible immediately, and will continue to improve as swelling subsides over the next three to six months.  Patients feel more comfortable exposing their arms and have improved self-confidence after this procedure.


Getting Started

If you would like to discuss your your options or get started on a procedure, Dr. Wolfeld is accepting new patients.

You may schedule a private consultation or procedure at any one of our Wolfeld Plastic Surgery offices in New York City, White Plains NY, or Hackensack NJ.

We have both phone and online appointment requests available.

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