Improve Your Appearance with Arm Lift Surgery

After weight loss surgery, patients typically lose a significant amount of weight very quickly. While a lower body weight is healthier, many patients are left with sagging, loose skin. If you are unhappy with your appearance of your arms because of excess skin, arm lift surgery can remove skin and fat for smoother, slimmer arms. Tijuana Bariatrics coordinates with medical professionals who can perform arm lift surgery at a Tijuana, Mexico, hospital. Traveling to undergo plastic surgery allows our patients to receive treatment for a fraction of what they might pay in the U.S. while still enjoying the highest of safety protocols and advanced technology. 

Candidates for Arm Lift Surgery

The best candidates for brachioplasty, or arm lift surgery, are men and women who have loose skin beneath their arms. This excess tissue is usually due to extensive weight loss, either as a result of diet and exercise or bariatric surgery. In some cases, sagging skin on the upper arms is a result of aging or a hereditary condition, rather than weight loss. 

Ideal candidates for the procedure have maintained a stable weight and still have good skin elasticity. Adult patients of any age are eligible, as long as their overall health is good, they do not smoke, and they understand the potential outcome of the procedure.

Illustration showing before and after arm lift surgery

Benefits of This Procedure

Undergoing an arm lift surgery can significantly improve your quality of life by: 

  • Improving your overall appearance
  • Enhancing your self-confidence
  • Increasing your clothing options
  • Allowing you fully appreciate your weight loss achievement

Patients who have recently lost a large amount of weight often find themselves hindered by their excess skin. This procedure can create slim, toned arms through contouring. 

Arm Lift Techniques 

There are a few procedure options for patients who wish to enhance the shape of their arms after aging or bariatric surgery and weight loss. Depending on your case, your surgeon may recommend a full, extended, or mini arm lift. Your doctor can suggest the best procedure for you after evaluating your goals and the state of your skin elasticity.

Standard Brachioplasty

A full arm lift targets sagging skin in the entire upper arm and can require an incision that runs from the elbow to the armpit. Incisions can be placed along the underside or back of the arm depending on your preferences.

Limited-Incision Brachioplasty

Also known as a mini arm lift, this technique is best for those who have loose skin that is concentrated at the top of the upper arm. A smaller incision is typically all that is required and can often be concealed in the natural folds of skin in the armpit. 

Extended Brachioplasty

This surgery is best for patients who would like to address excess skin and fat along the upper arm as well as the side of the chest. Doctors typically recommend this treatment for those who have experienced massive weight loss. 


Liposuction is often used in conjunction with an arm lift surgery to create natural-looking, thinner results. This treatment involves the use of a cannula which is inserted through small incisions to remove excess fat. It is only recommended if substantial skin elasticity is still present. 

The Surgery Procedure

Arm lift surgery is normally performed under general anesthesia and does not typically require an overnight stay in the hospital. These surgeries can usually take up to two hours. After marking the areas to be treated, your surgeon will carefully make incisions along so any scarring will be as inconspicuous as possible. Excess skin and underlying tissue will then be removed. The doctor will close the incisions, apply bandages, and in some cases, place drains to promote better healing and prevent fluid retention.

After the Operation

You will be provided with detailed post-operative instructions that are tailored to your care, as well as medications that you need to take as prescribed. However, most patients can generally expect their recovery to follow a standard timeline.

Immediately after Surgery

Immediately following the procedure, you should only consume liquids. Several hours later you may be able to consume solid foods. You will also be provided with a compression garment which should be worn at all times with the exception of showering or cleaning your incisions. During this time you should focus on resting as much as possible. Because of swelling and your incisions, you will not be able to drive or complete daily tasks without help.

The First Two Weeks of Recovery 

Although you will need to refrain from strenuous exercise for about six weeks, taking brief walks will help you avoid blood clots and promote a quicker recovery. It is important to keep your arms elevated while sleeping and relaxing, to reduce inflammation and aid the healing process. Bruising, swelling, tingling, and some numbness may occur but these side effects should subside in the upcoming weeks.

With approval from your doctor, you may be able to return to work, driving, and non-strenuous activities after the second week of recovery. However, if your job involves heavy lifting or manual labor you will most likely need to wait a few more weeks to return to work. During the next few weeks, you should still exercise caution when engaging in any activity that may put strain on your arms. 

Thinner, more toned arms can allow you to feel more confident in short-sleeve tops and swimsuits.

A Month after Your Procedure  

A month into your recovery, you may be able to participate in minimal cardiovascular activities. Typically, patients can return to jogging, lifting, and arduous exercise after about six weeks. It is of the utmost importance that you wait until your doctor has cleared you for these activities to avoid complications. You must also continue to wear your compression garments to achieve optimal results. 

Maintaining Your Results

Expect swelling to subside and complete results to be apparent two to three months following the procedure. The scars from the incision will continue to fade over the next few months. You should avoid direct sunlight for a year to help the scars fade as much as possible. If you can maintain a healthy lifestyle and consistent weight, your arm lift results can last for years. Be aware, however, that your skin will age normally, and this will result in reduced skin elasticity.

Contact Us Today

Thinner, more toned arms can allow you to feel more confident in short-sleeve tops and swimsuits. If you are ready to shape up your arms after weight loss or aging, contact Tijuana Bariatrics online or call (877) 639-1449 to learn more about an arm lift procedure. 

MessageOur Staff

Dr. Garcia is awesome. I chose bariatrics vertical sleeve surgery. I've lost 85 lbs. since January 2017. No complications... I regret not doing this years ago. Debbie M.

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