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Albuquerque, NM 87110

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Arm Lift

Arm Lift in Albuquerque, NM

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About Arm Lift Surgery

One big challenge that we all face when either getting older or losing weight is acquiring excess skin. Individuals who wish to target this excess, sagging skin that has lost its elasticity can undergo arm lift surgery to address the issue. At Hermosa Plastic Surgery, we offer upper arm lift surgery (also known as brachioplasty) as an option for anyone who cannot manage to tone and tighten their loose arm skin with exercise and diet alone. Loose skin from the elbow to the shoulder is very typical, particularly for women and men who are advancing in age or who have lost weight. Arm lift surgery excises this hanging skin to create a leaner, more youthful appearance to the upper body. Dr. Miguel Gallegos, a board-certified plastic surgeon in Albuquerque, NM, is very skilled in fat removal and skin tightening techniques. If you want to hear more information about how brachioplasty can improve the shape of your upper arms, please schedule an appointment at Hermosa Plastic Surgery.

Ideal Candidates

An upper arm lift is an aesthetic surgery that employs advanced methods to contour and remove extra skin. If you avoid sleeveless clothes because of your "bat wings" and would prefer your arms to appear trim and contoured again, then you could be an ideal candidate for arm lift surgery. To undergo this procedure, you need to be in overall good health so that your skin will recover properly. Some of the primary symptoms that patients who want an arm lift experience are loose, excess skin on their upper arms and minimal tightness of the skin. It is important that you are at or near your goal weight before you have this surgery because gaining weight can revert your results, and it is also advised that those wishing to have this procedure are nonsmokers. While most patients choose this procedure for its cosmetic effects, it’s important for all patients to set their expectations at a realistic level. A man or woman considering this surgery should know that scarring may be significant, but they should also realize that the benefits outweigh the disadvantages in most cases.

What are the benefits to this surgery?

Here at Hermosa Plastic Surgery, our patients offer feedback on many different benefits they enjoy from their arm lift procedures, including:

  • Removal of excess skin and tissues following weight loss
  • Tightening and toning of areas that other methods were ineffective towards
  • Minimal, nearly invisible scarring from our state-of-the-art surgical techniques
  • Improved arm and shoulder mobility for enhancing your active lifestyle

Surgical Technique

First, patients will attend a private consultation with Dr. Gallegos. At that time, you will get an opportunity to discuss your goals and desired results. From there, he will let you know what you can expect to get out of your procedure. Because everyone is different, board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Gallegos will recommend the right techniques for each patient while discussing the procedure’s risks and benefits.

Typically, your upper arm lift surgery will be performed in an outpatient facility, except in cases where several cosmetic surgeries are scheduled to be performed at one time. An upper arm lift may be added to other surgeries (often completed at a facility with inpatient monitoring), like a mommy makeover, tummy tuck, or thigh lift, as long as Dr. Gallegos considers the combination of procedures to be appropriate. Arm lift surgery is typically done with the patient under general anesthesia and can require a few hours to finish. First, you will sit or stand while the area is marked. The unwanted skin, determined by these initial markings, will then be surgically removed starting at the elbow and going all the way up into the armpit. The incisions will be placed to be as concealed as possible, although they will ultimately leave a visible scar. While some fat is left behind to protect arteries and nerves, liposuction is sometimes done to give a smoother result. After the skin is pulled taut, it will then be stitched in place. The results of this procedure will leave you with a slimmer arm contour. Following your arm lift surgery, you will have to care for the incisions by keeping them sanitized, covered, and in compression garments.

What to Expect

Dr. Gallegos will provide you with information about self-care after your brachioplasty, and it’s important for patients to follow these instructions precisely. When patients take care of themselves well, they’ll heal faster and see their desired results sooner. Gauze bandages can be removed after a few days, and patients are advised to refrain from showering for two days. A typical recovery timeframe for this procedure will take around two weeks, and it will involve lots of rest. It is vital to give your body the time that is necessary to heal. People use their arms for almost everything so most patients are encouraged to carefully ease their way back to their usual activities.

An appointment to remove sutures will be made around ten days following your surgery. Compression garments must be kept on until you receive permission from Dr. Gallegos to cease wearing them. For at least 4 – 5 weeks, all strenuous activity must be eliminated with the exception of short walks. If you notice uncontrolled bleeding, excessive swelling, fluid buildup (hematoma), signs of infection, numbness in the hands or arms, or unusual scarring, please contact Hermosa Plastic Surgery as soon as possible.

Frequently Asked Questions

How much does arm lift surgery cost?
The cost for a surgical arm lift will be based on several things. Before he can estimate your costs, Dr. Gallegos will start with a consultation to understand your wants and goals. Once this consultation is complete, he will develop your treatment plan and break down your costs. To make it easier for you to select an experienced, board-certified plastic surgeon, like Dr. Gallegos, and get the results you want, Hermosa Plastic Surgery accepts several payments. We can also give you information on low-interest financing.

Can I combine an arm lift with other surgeries?
It's normal for patients who desire an arm lift to create a custom treatment plan with another surgery. This is often called an upper body lift and can combine liposuction, a breast lift, or a tummy tuck. Arm lift surgery is also frequently done after weight loss surgery for those who have lost a significant amount of weight and need contouring throughout their body. During your initial consultation with Dr. Gallegos, other surgeries can be talked about so your custom treatment plan can meet all of your goals.

Will there be scars?
An arm lift uses incisions in order to excise loose skin, which leads to scarring from stitches. However, Dr. Gallegos will make every effort to use small, thin incisions that are placed in less visible areas. Following your arm lift, creams that help with healing will be suggested along with our tips for minimizing scarring. Dr. Gallegos also suggests you limit UV exposure for at least one year to minimize scar discoloration. In general, patients consider the overall benefits of an arm lift are worth the minimal scars that result. 

What results can I expect from an arm lift?
Arm lift surgery is done to excise loose skin and stubborn pockets of fat. You should follow a healthy lifestyle with a balanced diet and regular exercise to avoid a significant change in your weight, which could ultimately affect your results. After your lift surgery, as soon as you are recovered and Dr. Gallegos has given his permission, you should start strength training. This is a good way to improve the shape of your upper arms by strengthening the muscles.

Are there nonsurgical treatments to improve my arms?
Although there are several noninvasive skin tightening procedures, they can only give you small improvements. To address moderate to severe skin laxity, a surgical arm lift is your best choice. In addition to eliminating loose skin, Dr. Gallegos also uses liposuction on small pockets of fat, then smooths out the tissue and remaining skin. If you're interested in learning more about nonsurgical treatments, Dr. Gallegos can talk about these during your private consultation and help you decide which route is more appropriate for your needs.

What are the side effects of arm lift surgery?
Patients who have undergone this surgery should expect some swelling, pain, and discomfort after the operation. However, Dr. Gallegos can prescribe medication to ease any pain. Patients should go home and get plenty of rest after surgery to aid in the healing process. If any questionable side effects persist, or you think you may have an infection, please contact our office immediately.

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Recovery Time  
2 or more weeks
Average Procedure Time  
Several hours
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Regardless of how you feel about the droopy skin or "bat wings" that exists underneath your upper arms, board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Gallegos is more than capable of improving your confidence and arm definition with cosmetic surgery. This advanced service provides both physical and emotional benefits. If you're at or near a healthy weight but still can't seem to eliminate the skin and flab that hangs off your arms, please contact us to plan a consultation with Dr. Miguel Gallegos at Hermosa Plastic Surgery. Feel fitter and younger with arm lift surgery.

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*Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary from person to person. Images may contain models.