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Brachioplasty/Arm Lift Surgery Overview

Losing weight can be very empowering. To have the ability to transform your body and appearance can lead to a huge boost in self-esteem and confidence. However, when it comes to losing beyond tens of pounds (think potentially 100 or more), there is a downside: you are left with a plethora of excess skin and fatty tissue, and no matter how much you workout and eat well, the extra skin and tissue persists.

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  • Source: Google
  • Mar 17, 2019
I highly recommend Dr. Leo Lapuerta and his staff. The results are amazing and I could not be more happy!

Arm Lift Surgery in Houston, TX

A brachioplasty is a procedure that tightens and removes loose or hanging skin from the arms — also known as an arm lift. This procedure is very popular for its ability to reduce sagging, excess skin on the arms, resulting in a trim and youthful appearance.

Patients seeking arm lift surgery in Houston should look no further than the Plastic Surgery Institute of Southeast Texas, where our own Dr. Lapuerta has been performing the procedure for over two decades.

What Is an Arm Lift?

An arm lift, or Brachioplasty, is a form of plastic surgery to address sagging or loose skin on the arms. Weight loss, aging, and the body changing over time are common culprits for this condition, and an arm lift serves to remove excess or loose skin. The skin is then surgically reshaped, resulting in firm and tight arms.

Brachioplasty and Mini Arm Lift: Houston and Surrounds

For those looking for arm lift surgery in Houston, Dr. Leo Lapuerta is an experienced surgeon able to perform body contouring procedures to help you meet your goals. Whether patients are hoping for a full arm lift or a mini one, our team is here to answer your questions about Brachioplasty and other cosmetic procedures.  

What’s the Difference Between a Full Arm Lift and a Mini Arm Lift?

Both procedures provide similar results through a slightly different surgical approach. We offer a full arm lift which requires two incisions, but some candidates prefer to go with a mini arm lift. The mini lift is performed with only one incision, generally made under the armpit.

Who Should Consider Arm Lift Surgery?

The ideal candidate for an arm lift is someone unhappy with the appearance of their arms due to age or weight loss. All arm lift patients should be in good general health. It is advised that patients avoid smoking at least two weeks before surgery. This is because smoking cigarettes has an impact on circulation and the delivery of needed blood cells to the wound.

Patients should also have realistic expectations for the results of their arm lift surgery. A consultation with Dr. Lapuerta will allow patients to have a strong understanding of what their arms will look like after they have fully recovered.

Getting An Arm Lift After Weight Loss

According to The American Society of Plastic Surgeons, brachioplasties are among the top 5 cosmetic procedures performed after weight loss.  However, many patients who have recently lost weight have excess skin or stretch marks on many parts of their body, not just their arms. Several procedures can address these issues, such as panniculectomy surgery

It is common for arm lift patients to combine their arm lift with another procedure. Some common techniques often combined during what is known as an “upper body lift” include liposuction, abdominoplasty (tummy tuck), and breast surgery (breast lift). Dr. Lapuerta and his team can help you create a treatment plan that addresses one or multiple lift procedures depending on your goals and your body’s unique anatomy.

Arm Lift Surgery Information

If your arms have hanging excess skin and fatty tissue, an arm lift can drastically improve their appearance. There are two primary types of arm lift surgery: a traditional arm lift and a mini arm lift Here’s what to expect from the different techniques, during the actual procedure, and afterwards during the recovery period. 

Arm Lift Surgical Technique

During arm lift surgery, an incision is made along the inner arm, from the armpit down toward the elbow. Once this incision has been made, liposuction may be used to remove excess fat, and any loose skin will be trimmed away. Depending on the extent of the surgery, a draining tube may be placed to help control bleeding. In patients with excessive drooping, where there is looseness within the internal tissue structures, a tightening technique will be used internally. These surgical efforts will result in a smaller circumference of the upper arm.

A mini arm lift has a similar surgical technique to the traditional version, but it only uses one small “ellipsis-shaped” incision near the armpit leaving a scar that is only visible when the arm is raised.

The Day of An Arm Lift Procedure: What to Expect During Arm Lift Surgery

Brachioplasty is performed under general anesthesia in Dr. Lapuerta’s on-site, accredited surgical facility and typically takes around 2 hours to complete. It is considered an outpatient procedure. If this surgery is combined with another body contouring procedure, then the patient may be required to stay overnight in the hospital. Once patients are healthy enough to be discharged from the hospital, the Brachioplasty recovery process begins.

Arm Lift Recovery: What to Expect After Arm Lift Surgery

Following surgery, the arm should be kept elevated to help control swelling and promote circulation. For the first one to two weeks, the arm and other impacted areas will experience some swelling and bruising. Patients may need to wear a compression garment positioned near the incision site to help reduce swelling. This compression garment will help stimulate blood flow to aid the healing process. Once the swelling has gone down, you should be able to see the amazing results of your arm lift.

Patients will experience a slow return of normal function and should expect to miss somewhere between three to seven days of work. However, even after you return to work, arm and hand strength will be weak for the first several weeks as the internal tissues heal. Light exercise can be resumed approximately two weeks after arm lift surgery, and more strenuous activity can be resumed around four to six weeks after surgery. As always, be sure to discuss these activities with your doctor during post-op check-ups.

Following surgery, patients can then begin to work on building muscle through strength training. Once the arms are healed, patients can resume exercise and weight training. This is a great way to gain additional shape to the arms.

Arm Lift Houston: Costs and Considerations

The average arm lift cost is between $5,000-$8,000. Each arm lift procedure is personalized to that specific patient, addressing their desired goals. It can also be tough to get an exact Brachioplasty cost because the procedure is often performed in conjunction with other body contouring procedures. In those cases, the price will increase.

The best way to get an accurate arm lift cost estimate is by scheduling a consultation with Dr. Lapuerta.

Schedule Your Brachioplasty in Houston with Dr. Lapuerta!

For the best brachioplasty surgeon Houston has to offer, get in touch with Dr. Leo Lapuerta for a free and discreet consultation on your potential procedure.


  • Recovery Time
  • 1-2 Weeks
  • Average Procedure Time
  • 2 Hours
  • Post-op Follow-up
  • 1 Week
  • Procedure Recovery Location
  • Outpatient

Arm Lift FAQs

How Much Does an Arm Lift Cost in Houston?
Although this will depend, most brachioplasties are between $5,000-$8,000.
How Long Does an Arm Lift Take?
Generally, arm lift procedures take around two hours.
Does Arm Lift Surgery Leave Scars?
There will be scars at the incision site following arm lift surgery. However, Dr. Lapuerta is an expert plastic surgeon, and he will do everything possible to minimize the visibility of any scarring during the surgery. Patients can expect any scarring to fade over time, and Dr. Lapuerta makes incisions in such a way as to try to make sure the scar is hidden in a place that is not highly visible to the average eye. It is recommended that patients avoid sun exposure during the first year to protect the incisions from any additional discoloration. Most patients believe the scars are a small trade-off for a new, shapelier arm. We will discuss scar care to help assist in the healing process.
How Painful is an Arm Lift?
Although there is some pain associated with brachioplasty surgery, Dr. Laperuta will provide an anesthetic for the procedure and counsel you on appropriate pain-management during your recovery.
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