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What Happens During a Plastic Surgery Arm Lift?

Plastic Surgery

May 29, 2020 | 3 minute read

arm lift Yorba Linda, CA

An arm lift is a type of plastic surgery that involves the removal of extra skin on the upper arms. If you have this particular issue and want to do something about it, now is a perfect time to do so.

Learn the facts

Because an arm lift is a form of plastic surgery, it is imperative for an individual to schedule a consultation with a plastic surgeon. With the information provided, they can determine if this is something they want to do.


Weeks and even months before having an arm lift procedure, the patient can start preparing themselves. That way, there is a better chance of achieving the optimal outcome. For one thing, the individual should stop smoking at least two months in advance. That will help the patient heal faster, and it will also reduce the risk of developing an infection.

The surgeon performing the plastic surgery will do a pre-operative exam to check for any health issues and discuss the patient’s medical history. This also gives the patient an opportunity to address any concerns and ask questions. At this time, the patient will have a chest X-ray, lab work and electrocardiogram done.

The procedure

On the day of the scheduled arm lift surgery, the doctor will start by making marks on the patient’s arms to use as a guide for the incisions. While under general anesthesia, the surgeon begins cutting, starting at the armpit area down to the elbow on the underside skin. Sometimes with this plastic surgery, the doctor uses local anesthesia instead.

Following the marks on the arm, the surgeon uses a scalpel to make the cuts. Depending on whether there are any deposits of fat, liposuction may be performed as well. With the extra skin removed, the doctor pulls the remaining skin together and sutures it in place. That allows the surgeon to reshape and tighten the arms.

Typically, an arm lift alone takes about two hours to complete. However, if the procedure includes liposuction, it could last as long as three hours. With the plastic surgery complete, the patient will need someone to drive them home. Even if they had local anesthesia instead of general, they would still require assistance. In some instances, the surgeon will keep the patient overnight in the hospital.

Potential risks

After the patient returns home, the surgeon advises them to notify them immediately if any problems arise. These may include excessive bleeding, fever, excess fluid drainage and if any sutures come out.

Eliminate sagging skin

If you no longer want to have excess skin on your upper arms, talk to your doctor about an arm lift. By having excess skin removed, you may feel more confident wearing short sleeves and a swimsuit. Although there is healing time involved, most patients go back to normal activities in about two weeks. However, more strenuous physical activity requires additional healing time.

Request an appointment here: or call Optimal Plastic Surgery at (657) 444-9291 for an appointment in our Yorba Linda office.

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