The heavy drooping skin of the upper arm is mainly a problem for women as men mostly wear sleeves. However, for women it can make choice of clothing difficult. The excess skin and fat can be due to ageing or due to weight loss, but sometimes is just something that runs in families starting at a young age.
What does the procedure involve?
There are two degrees of brachiaplasty. The classical operation and a mini-brachiaplasty. The operations are carried out under a general anaesthetic, with an overnight stay. With the full procedure, a large piece of skin and fat from the inner side of the arm is removed. The resulting scar is placed so that it should not be noticeable with the arm in a resting position. However, with the arm raised the scar will be visible, and will run from just below the elbow up to the axilla, or sometimes further, to the side of the breast. This operation will give the firmest result. For more moderate cases, and giving a more moderate result, the mini-brachiaplasty is performed by liposuction of the inner arm through one or two tiny wounds on the arm, and then skin excision in the axillary area, leaving only a scar here.
Is this treatment right for you?
Anyone with an excess of skin or fat in the arm, who is fit enough for a general anaesthetic may be suitable. If there is a lot of lose skin, or the skin is very heavy, then a full brachiaplasty may be the only surgical option. For more moderate degrees a mini-brachiaplasty with less scarring may be suitable.
Post Operative Recovery
There is usually only moderate bruising and swelling after this procedure, which settle very quickly. Quite often there is some slow healing of the wound in the axilla, but this will be managed by Mr Wilson’s team. Patients undergoing the mini-brachiaplasty will be asked to wear an elasticated garment once we are happy the wounds are healing well. As with many procedures the result will look satisfactory at 6 weeks and looks even better at 6 months.