What's the Best Procedure for Wrinkled Aging Arms?

I'm 70. My arms have protruding veins, completely wrinkled, age spots. But the worst part is the inside of my forearms. The skin sags terribly with completely crepey skin. I want to cry whenever I look at them. There must be something that can reverse all this. And of course I have saggy upper arms. Sorry, I don't know how to upload pictures yet.

Doctor Answers 13

Loose upper arm

Thank you for your question about your arms and arm skin.

  • An arm lift will remove the upper arm sagginess inside the forearm.
  • Topical TCA skin peels or laser treatments reduce the skin wrinkles.
  • No sun - sun block is not enough - long sleeves over your arms when in the sun. 
  • Fat injections and vein injections may help the prominent veins.
  • See a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon to get started. Hope this helps. Best wishes.

Treatment Options for Aging Arms

Many people in your age group (because of sun damage, genetic predisposition and other medical problems) have problems with their upper arms and forearms. The problem of the forearm laxity is a vexing one for the patient as well as their treating plastic surgeon. I strongly council you to consider doing nothing surgical for the severe laxity of the forearm, because the trade-off of scarring and contour improvements are not as good for your upper arms. Scar positioning is a challenge in forearm laxity. Also forearm laxity procedures are more likely to result in sensory and hand function problems postoperatively. In the forearm, the best technology I've seen for non-operative improvement for laxity is SkinTyte™. One treatment a week for 6 weeks will make a dramatic improvement. You may need some maintenance treatments throughout the year as well to maintain your improved contour.

Plastic surgery is the trade-off between nearly imperceptible scarring and contour improvement. Extreme laxity of the upper arm can be tremendously corrected with the surgical technique called brachioplasty or arm lift. Brachioplasty surgery takes about 2-3 hours depending on the patient's size. Patients who have very thick upper arms, may benefit from simultaneous Vaser Liposuction, while at the same time removing the excess skin with the brachioplasty. That would be decided upon in your consultation, depending upon your goals. Most patients do not require post-operative compression garments after their surgery. The incision is a woven suture with almost no outside suturing. I typically do not require drains to be placed for this procedure. Many patients benefit from postoperative massage therapy to soften the operative tissues and desensitize the incision. Persistent arm swelling is rare. Patients can resume normal exercise and activity in 2-3 weeks. I allow my patients to shower the next day. Usually my patients are fine to drive a vehicle 4-5 days after surgery.

Representative photos with great results are available on my website for your viewing.

Paul Vanek, MD
Cleveland Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 27 reviews

Arm treatments

Thank you for your question (s).  As a plastic surgeon I will always say that the best results will be from surgery IF you are the right candidate.  It is imperative that you have a full consultation with a board certified surgeon.  There are non-surgical options as well which can address tightening of the tissue as well as the pigment concerns you have.  Again, it is important to have a consult to see which options are better for you.  Either way, there will be a solution that can give you some good clinical results as long as your expectations are clearly stated to the physician.  

Good luck with your treatments.

Dr. M.

R. Stephen Mulholland, MD
Toronto Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 80 reviews

Arm Treatments

There are a few different procedures that would be able address all of your cosmetic concerns on your upper arms. First, an arm lift, medically known as brachioplasty, would be the best option correct lose and sagging skin in the arms. The skin removal could be extended to your forearms to remove the excess skin there as well. Laser treatments and peels would enhance the texture of the skin by targeting the wrinkles and sunspots. To reduce the appearance of veins in the arms you may want to consider both sclerotherapy or laser vein removal. I would recommend scheduling a consultation with a board certified plastic surgeon to devise a plan that would tackle all of your concerns.

Scott Chapin, MD, FACS
Philadelphia Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 20 reviews

Arm Lift for Aging Arms

Thank you for your question regarding wrinkly forearm and upper arm skin. It is difficult to answer accurately your question without pictures, but I will try my best.

It sounds like you have extra forearms and upper arms skin with minimal fat. This is common with normal aging. Unfortunately, as we age, we all lose skin elasticity. If you had just excess arm and forearm fat and had good skin elasticity, I would suggest forearm and arm liposuction. Unfortunately, due to your loss of skin elasticity, absence of forearm and upper fat, and presence of excess arm skin, I would suggest skin excision.

Due to the presence of forearm and upper arm skin, I would suggest a combined procedure addressing both the arms and forearms. The procedure would remove skin from the upper arm and the forearm. Depending on physical examination, the incision would extend from the armpit to the mid-forearm or the wrist.

Good luck with your quest for skinnier forearms and arms.
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact my office.

Sincerely, Dr. Katzen

Arm lift

with aging skin loose its elasticity and hangs.

the best procedure to correct is skin removal.

we call those procedures: lifting.

arm lift or brachioplasty is very effective surgery for this deformity

Jacques Haddad, MD
Montreal Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 7 reviews

Arm lifts in aging patients

Your best option is to tighten the skin with some type of arm lift.  Definitely consult with an expert in the field to understand your best options.  The good news is that scars tend to look great in older patients.

David Stoker, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 45 reviews

Aging Arm treatment

How to Treat Aging Arms
There are several different options that may help  but all to a degree. An exam would be necessary. Prescription strength skin lighteners and or certain lasers will help with the sunspots as well as using sunscreen daily. Their are procedures like RF, radio frequency that may help but only a  small amount in my experience. See a dermatologist or plastic surgeon for further advice. 


Brachioplasty for wrinkled arms...

If you are experiencing sagging, wrinkled arms then having a brachioplasty performed would be an excellent option to consider.  A brachioplasty can help reduce excess skin and the fat between your underarms and elbows, and the forearms as well if needed.  Exercising can help sometimes, but as we all get older, the collagen and elastin in the skin become less organized, allowing the skin to droop.  So undergoing a brachioplasty can result in a much smoother appearance under the arms.


Saggy, wrinkled arms and WHAT TO DO

Sagging of arm skin is something both men and women deal with and it is painful for these people.   There are procedures that can be done to improve this situation.   Some direct excision of forearm skin and arm skin is a possibility.  The scars are long and arm and forearm length but heal amazingly well in older patients.   The next reason skin sags is fat loss.   Fat replacement must always be considered in the arm and forearm plan of rehabilitation.   Fat grafts are rich with stem cells and even seem to help the quality of the skin.  Next consideration is the use of a Retin A-Hydroquinone mix  such as that of BrandMD for $70 for 4 months or Obagi which is more costly.  The combination of the above works great.  My Best,  Dr C

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.