I am wondering if I do Liposuction to my upper arms, will I need an arm lift as well? (photos)

I am a 25 year old female who has lost ALOT of weight. I am now planing a liposuction procedure to my upper arm (batwings) but i am not sure if that alone will solve the problem to my flappy arms.

Doctor Answers 13

Liposuction vs Brachioplasty?

Liposuction of the arms can work well for those that have excess fat in the underarms but firmer skin still.  If the skin is a little looser, only doing liposuction will remove fat, but is not powerful enough in some to get the skin to really retract back the way it should.  In those patients, a brachioplasty is a better option since it addresses both the excess fat and skin.  However, this does come with a scar down the inside of the arm, which is why it is not quite as popular as other aesthetic procedures.  The best thing to do is to go for a few consultations with board certified plastic surgeons and see what is recommended.  I hope this helps.

Barrington Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 75 reviews

Arm lift

Thank you for your question. Based on the picture you most likely need a lift to get a optimal results . Please consult with a board certified PS for evaluation.

Ven Erella, MD
Austin Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 36 reviews

I am wondering if I do Liposuction to my upper arms, will I need an arm lift as well?

Hello dear, thanks for your question and provided information as well.. This is the surgical procedure that revolutionized cosmetic surgery becoming one of the most performed cosmetic procedures. Subcutaneous tissue or fat is removed in order to contour the body in a way that is harmonious and pleasing to the senses. It can be performed in almost all regions of the body such as the neck, chin, abdomen, back, buttocks, thighs, arms and ankles. Usually done through a small incision in the skin through which a cannula connected to a vacuum is applied, it can be performed alone or in combination with other procedures. After liposuction your body is going to be really swollen for at least 2 to 4 months after your surgery. It is important for you to wear your compression garment for at least 6 months, the first 3 months 24/7 and then the last 3 months at least 12 hours per day for your body get use to not having the faja for so many time. When you remove it, your body can get swollen and also you can have pain. Remember to also compress your body to prevent a seroma which is an accumulation of liquid that has to be drained, it is hard to touch and also really painful. Bruises are completely normal for almost 3 months from surgery, that’s why is better for you to use a bruising cream and apply it all over your body 3 times a day. To prevent bad circulation and swollen legs, use compression socks. Brazilian butt lift can be performed with the same procedure and for a month it will be swollen and it will drop a little bit without losing it’s shape if you use your garment.. If you’re going to perform liposuction on your inner, outer, anterior, lateral, postetior thighs, be careful and consult with your surgeon what’s best for you, sometimes we have more extra skin than fat, that can cause severe sagginess on our legs, which can be only be reversed performing a thigh lift.

Tania Medina de Garcia, MD
Dominican Republic Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 418 reviews

Arm lift

Thanks for the question.  For you to get the best results you will need a formal arm lift to remove excess skin and fat. See a BCPS for treatment and for an explanation of the risks and benefits. 

Good luck


Carlos Burnett, MD, FACS
Westfield Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 38 reviews

Liposuction of Arms or Arm Lift?

After looking at your pictures liposuction alone will not give you optimal results. There is a loss of skin elasticity of your upper arms. Removing more fat with liposuction will create even more loose skin. An arm lift with liposuction will remove the excess skin and fat, and will give you the best results. Talk to your surgeon about your concerns and possibly adding the arm lift to your scheduled surgery.

Cynthia L. Mizgala, MD
Metairie Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 60 reviews

I am wondering if I do Liposuction to my upper arms, will I need an arm lift as well?

Lipo may give some improvement (Smart Lipo may also help tighten the skin) but an arm lift will give the most improvement. 

See link below for examples. 

Karol A. Gutowski, MD, FACS
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 69 reviews

Arm lift or liposuction (or both)

Liposuction of any area of the body requires the overlying skin to have enough elasticity to shrink once the fat underneath it is removed.  The upper arm skin has less elasticity than many other parts of the body.  Once you factor in your weight loss and the stretch marks that are visible in your photos, I don't think you have enough elasticity to have a nice result from liposuction alone and believe you'll need to have an arm lift.  With liposuction alone, I anticipate your "flappy arms" will be skinnier but not less flappy.

Lisa J. Peters, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

Arm liposuction - do I also need a lift?

Thank you for asking about your arm liposuction.

You are exactly right -
Your arm skin is loose after your weight loss (congratulations on that by the way).
You will need an arm lift with liposuction to get your best result.
Always see a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon.

Best wishes - Elizabeth Morgan MD PHD FACS

Elizabeth Morgan, MD, PhD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 43 reviews

Arm lift

Lipo alone will not address the excess skin.  You would be better served with lipo and an arm lift at the same time.  You have to be careful though because lipo will cause arm swelling and then if too much skin is removed then the wound wont close.  Go to an experienced plastic surgeon for this.  

John Michael Thomassen, MD
Fort Lauderdale Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 52 reviews

Liposuction with or without skin excision after weight loss.

It is really impossible to discern by your photos alone, whether you would benefit from liposuction alone. I have found that laser liposuction (Smart Lipo) of the arms causes a lot more tightening than straight liposuction ever did. Many times I have told patients like yourself, that it makes more sense to first perform smart lipo and wait to see by six months if there is any excess skin that requires skin excision and a scar. Most patients responds with more tightening than I would have expected and then choose to not have skin excision. I perform both procedures, smart lipo and skin excision under local anesthesia so patients feel comfortable with the potential two procedure plan. Since I started using Smart Lipo for arm fat reduction, I have not had to perform a second procedure to remove skin. I would need to evaluate you in person to better understand your skin quality and then better predict if your skin will contract enough from smart lipo alone or require a skin excision procedure as well. Best of luck! 

Laurie A. Casas, MD, FACS
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 96 reviews

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.