As women, in particular age their arms can become “an issue” for them as they may become saggy and exhibit the condition known commonly as “Bingo Wings“. Many women find this a source of embarrassment and often it impacts on how they dress and their willingness to take exercise.
There are three common approaches that can be taken to improve the shape of the arms:
- Liposuction if the arms are fat and doughy
- Excision of excess skin
- A combination of excision and liposuction if both problems are present.
An arm lift is relatively straightforward procedure which can be done under IV (intravenous) sedation or general anaesthetic and will take typically 2-3 hours to complete, where the surgeon will excise the excess skin and fat.
The incisions are usually hidden in the inner arm area and extend from the elbow to the armpit. The incision is made with some curvature and in the shape of a “Z” to decrease the possibility of scar contracture or puckering. A curved Z-shaped incision also heals better than a straight line.
The incision stops at the elbow and does not proceed down towards the wrist because the arm has numerous nerves, arteries, and tendons that need to be protected.
The true arm lift is normally the excision combined with liposuction to give the best results. During the recovery period the arms may be quite swollen for the first 10 days, improving gradually with the final result visible in 6-8 months. Post-operatively, patients will be required to wear supportive bandages for about four weeks.
They key objective of the procedure is to improve the overall shape and size of their arms, and make the patient feel more comfortable in short-sleeved clothing.