Am I a Good Candidate for a Mini Arm Lift? (photo)

I would like to realistically get a 50% improvement on my "hanging skin" but really am not comfortable with the long scar a full arm lift would give me.

Doctor Answers 13

Am I a Good Candidate for a Mini Arm Lift?

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     As others have stated, a mini arm lift will not give you a noticeable result but will produce a scar.  Find a plastic surgeon with ELITE credentials who performs hundreds of body contouring procedures each year.  Then look at the plastic surgeon's website before and after photo galleries to get a sense of who can deliver the results.  Kenneth Hughes, MD Los Angeles, CA

Mini arm lift

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AS far as I am concerned the only way to get a reasonable result is with a full length incision. At this point you might say that a 50% improvement will make you happy, but it will not.

Peter Fisher, MD
San Antonio Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 58 reviews

Mini Arm Lift Candidate?

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-You are not a candidate for a mini arm lift.  Do not undergo a mini arm lift, as you will be very disappointed with the results.

-Mini arm lifts often give "mini" results.

-If you have looked at before and after photos of what kind of scars you will be left with after a full brachioplasty, and you don't like them, then I would not pursue an arm lift.  However, I think you would have a very nice result with a full arm lift (brachioplasty).

-Thanks for sharing your photos!


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I would suggest a full arm lift meaning elbow to armpit plus or minus down the chest wall if needed. A mini lift will give you a real scar but a mini result. Go for the long scar and big dramatic results

Arm Lift

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The skin excess extend to the elbow. You will need a full arm lift (Brachioplasty). The incision in the arm pit and then extends to the elbow on the inside of the arm.

Samir Shureih, MD
Baltimore Plastic Surgeon

Great Candidate!!

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You are a great candidate for an arm lift (brachioplasty).   Unfortunately I would not consider you a candidate for a mini-arm lift.  You have a significant amount of skin laxity and you will not be happy with a mini-lift.  However, I think you would have such a great result with a full arm lift that the scars would not bother you.   I have found in my practice that the patients that have as much skin as you do are so happy with the results they don't mind the long scar.  The arm scar is notorious for being thicker and more evident than other scars on the body.  Look at before and after pictures on the surgeons web site.  Examine the scars.  You can also use paper tape on the incisions after surgery.  This will help improve the scaring.  Hope this helps.  Great luck with your decision.

Hollie Hickman, MD
Jacksonville Plastic Surgeon

Brachioplasty Trade-offs

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It's not unusual for massive weight loss patients to develop loose, saggy, upper arm skin. When this situation arises, patients want their excess skin removed, but are always apprehensive about the scarring that's associated with these procedures.

Unfortunately, your pictures indicate severe upper arm skin sag. correction of this problem will require a full brachioplasty. This procedure involves removal of excess skin in multiple dimensions. The procedure is performed through an incision along the inner aspect of the arm that extends from the elbow to the axilla. The procedure is associated with excellent clinical results and high levels of patient satisfaction. Unfortunately, there's no way to avoid scarring when performing these procedures.

It's important to realize that this type of procedure involves trade-offs between excess skin and scarring. If you're considering this option, it's important to consult a board certified plastic surgeon with experience in this area. This surgeon should be able to formulate a treatment plan that addresses your concerns and achieves your aesthetic goals.

Am I a good candidate for a mini arm lift?

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Judging by your photographs you would be a much better candidate for a full-length incision brachioplasty. In performing this procedure an incision is made on the inside of the arm extending from the elbow into the armpit. Sometimes it is necessary to extend the incision further into the armpit and sometimes past it. Utilizing this incision excess skin is removed and the wound is closed. It is very important to position the scar properly so that it is concealed as much as possible. A well-placed incision should result in a scar that is only visible when the arms are raised. This operation is normally performed as an outpatient. It is very important for the surgeon to discuss the resultant scar thoroughly with the patient preoperatively. Very commonly this scar takes a longer time to undergo the full healing and maturation process. Maturation refers to the process whereby the scar becomes less apparent. Brachioplasty scars commonly take up to 2 years to fully mature. Be sure to consult a surgeon board certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery who has extensive experience in all forms of body contouring. Good luck

John J. Edney, MD
Omaha Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 133 reviews

Mini arm lift

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In looking at your picture I appreciate that you have a significant excess of upper arm skin.

In this situation, I feel you would benefit by a formal brachioplasty which will eliminate all of the excess skin but, it is in trade for  a longer scar.  The issue is the scar placement which I would place on the lower edge of your arm when your arm is positioned at 90 degrees to your body with your fingers pointing upward.  This in my experience is the most concealed.

Roger J. Friedman, MD
Bethesda Plastic Surgeon

Arm lift

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It is hard to give you a recommendation without direct examination.  If you do have hanging skin, brachioplasty (arm lift) will give you a good contour.  However, it will have scar.  Depending on your need, the scar can be elbow to armpit or confined around the armpit.  If you have a mild laxity, liposuction/laser may help.  It will be best to be examined by a board-certified plastic surgeon.  Best wishes.

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.