Arm Lift

Conveniently located to serve the areas of Beverly Hills, West Hollywood, Los Angeles and Pasadena, CA

An arm lift, also called a brachioplasty, is a procedure that reshapes and smoothes out the contours in the upper arm with the removal of excess fat and skin. With just a discreet incision along the inner arm, the surgery can massively restore a patient’s confidence, helping them feel more comfortable with wearing short sleeves.

Arm lifts are suitable for patients who have lost a significant amount of weight where the arm skin has lost its elasticity and cannot recoil to its original form. The procedure is commonly paired with arm liposuction if residual excess fatty deposits need to be addressed. The arm lift can create permanent improvements to the aesthetic contour and appearance of the arm and highlight a patient’s weight loss accomplishments. 

Before and After Photos

If you feel disheartened by the amount of excess tissue on your arms, consider booking an appointment with Dr. Mossi Salibian, a board-certified plastic surgeon with vast experience and specialty training in face and body contouring and reconstructive and cosmetic surgeries. Dr. Salibian’s volunteer work, research, and presentation endeavors have all contributed to his skill set and helped him to become the attentive, caring surgeon that he is today.

To get started, call his practice at (310) 550-0750, request a consultation through his contact form, or visit his location in Los Angeles. If you reach out online, his staff will assist you within 24 hours. 

About Arm Laxity

The arms are constantly visible and play a significant role in our overall appearance. However, over time, the skin of the upper arms may become lax and begin to sag. Many who undergo arm lift procedures have stretched, redundant skin that has developed as a result of losing weight with diet and exercise or through the use of medications like semaglutide (Ozempic, Wegovy) and tirzepatide (Mounjaro). Some people simply experience laxity with the natural aging process. These features are often colloquially and unflatteringly referred to as “bat wings”. No amount of exercising or dieting can target this flabby skin, making it necessary to explore other options for arm reshaping. Arm lift surgery offers a solution to tighten the upper arms by removing excess skin to reveal a smoother, sleeker silhouette.

Why Does Arm Tissue Sag?

Research shows that beginning as early as your 30s, the dermis layer of the skin can weaken due to the degradation of rigid collagen. (1) Excessive sun exposure can worsen these changes and contribute to a more wrinkled, crepey, and blemished look. For some, localized fat deposits also remain and weigh down the upper arm in an unflattering way.

Regardless of the issues present, Dr. Salibian can tailor his approach to safely reshape the upper arm so that it complements your body harmoniously. He may recommend a mini arm lift with a shorter incision hidden within the armpit if you have less severe skin laxity, or he may recommend the extended version where the incisions follow the laxity of the lateral chest wall in addition to the arm region. An arm lift can mark the next step in your life, helping you celebrate the new body that you have worked so hard to achieve.

Arm Lift Candidates

You are a good candidate for brachioplasty surgery if you have maintained a stable weight for several months and are in overall good health with a BMI under 30. If you smoke or use nicotine products, you must quit for a minimum of two months and for an extended period to improve your blood circulation before and after your surgery. Having excess weight at the time of your surgery (a body mass index of greater than 30) and nicotine in your system may result in poor wound healing, increasing the chance of infection and scarring. (2)

It is important to have realistic expectations for an arm lift as there will be visible scars, regardless of how carefully and meticulously the incision is closed. There will be permanent scars along the inside of the arms extending into the armpits with the standard arm lift, or shorter versions depending on the existing degree of arm and lateral chest wall skin laxity.

Personal Consultation

As a plastic surgeon with extensive training and multiple areas of expertise, Dr. Salibian has the well-rounded knowledge to treat this highly specific problem area. He takes into account every individual’s goals, altering his technique to create personalized results they can be satisfied with for years to come.

During your consultation, you will have ample opportunity to express your issues with the lax skin and fat distribution in your arms. Dr. Salibian will evaluate the tissues and give you his best recommendations, ensuring that you understand all aspects of the procedure. He will be sure to go over the healing process and what you need to know to make a speedy recovery. He will work to foster natural-looking, proportionate, and smooth arm contours that you can feel proud of. With his meticulous skin closure techniques and comprehensive postoperative care, you can expect to enjoy your renewed upper arms with discreet, minimal scarring.

To get in touch with Dr. Salibian today, inquire about a consultation through his online form or call his Los Angeles office at (310) 550-0750. No matter your aesthetic concerns, Dr. Salibian is dedicated to meeting and exceeding your expectations. 


In preparation for surgery, you will undergo medical clearance by your primary care doctor. Dr. Salibian and the anesthesiologist will review your blood tests and medical clearance to ensure you are ready for the procedure. He will review your medications that affect blood clotting, and he will ask you to stop taking blood thinning supplements to ensure there is no unwanted bleeding during the procedure. You should pick up all necessary prescriptions before your surgical appointment so that you are adequately prepared once home after surgery. You should also make a plan for a trusted adult to take you home and stay with you for the first couple of days of your recovery.

Arm Lift Procedure Options

Traditional Arm Lift

A “traditional” arm lift is designed for more severe skin laxity. On the day of your surgery, Dr. Salibian will mark the areas of the arms where the incisions will be with your arms outstretched and bent at a right angle to give him a better visualization of the tissues. (3) If necessary, he will use liposuction to remove excess fat. He will usually address the posterior/ back of the shoulder region of the arms and the lateral upper chest (back fat). The skin may not be as lax in this region, but many people carry excess fatty deposits in this area. With liposuction, Dr. Salibian will only need to make a tiny incision near the elbow or at the armpit. He will then use this tiny incision to administer tumescent fluid, a solution that will make the fat deposits swell, numb the area more effectively, and constrict blood vessels. After this fluid settles in, he will insert a long, slim device called a cannula that is only 2.5 or 3 mm in diameter. (4) A small amount of liposuction and lipocontouring that targets the excess fat deposits will help promote a more even contour in the arms and upper outer shoulder and back region before the removal of excess arm skin.

Once he excises the excess skin fold, he will suture the remaining skin edges in layers to a more taut contour, ensuring the desired youthful restoration of the arms.

Extended Arm Lift

This technique adequately addresses both the excess skin of the upper arm and adjacent laxity at the sides of the torso by the breast folds. An extended arm lift incorporates an incision that is similar to a traditional arm lift incision, but it also dips down into the inframammary crease just below the armpit. This technique is used for patients after massive weight loss as part of their staged body contouring procedure where he corrects the excess and hanging lateral chest wall skin and loose arm skin during the same operation.

In general, Dr. Salibian addresses the arm, lateral chest wall, and breast procedures (breast lift or breast lift with implants) in a single operative setting. He then addresses the abdominal and lower torso skin laxity with the plication of the underlying abdominal muscles in a separate operative setting (abdominoplasty). Should a thigh lift be in the surgical algorithm, it is performed as a separate operative stage or setting. It is important to stage body contouring procedures as they are in general lengthy operations, and a staged approach is safest for a seamless and timely recovery.

Mini Arm Lift

Dr. Salibian may suggest a mini arm lift if your main concern is a small amount of lax upper arm skin. Rather than making an incision that spans the length of the upper arm from near the elbow to the armpit, he will only need to create one shorter incision hidden in the armpit. From this horizontal opening, he can measure how much skin to remove and tighten, contouring the upper arm skin laxity with the incision hidden in the armpit crease, away from the arm itself, fixing upper arm skin laxity.

With all the different techniques utilized, Dr. Salibian is careful to protect important sensory nerves to the arm, such as the medial antebrachial cutaneous nerve (5), and works around and away from the deep fascia (the connective tissue that surrounds muscles, cartilage, bone, and blood vessels).

Cost of an Arm Lift in Los Angeles

The cost of your arm lift will depend on the technique employed, whether or not liposuction is included, operating room and anesthesia fees, and surgical garments that add to the overall quality of the final results. Dr. Salibian’s office will give you a detailed quote during your consultation. The cost of an arm lift (bilateral) may range from $8,500 to $17,000.

To take your first step today, we invite you to call (310) 550-0750 or fill out our contact form, and a member of Dr. Salibian’s team can help you find an appointment most convenient for you. Your dream of rejuvenated, toned, and attractive arms may be just one inquiry away. 


How long does an arm lift take? 

It usually takes 2 to 4 hours, depending on the extent of surgical procedures involved.

Is liposuction always necessary during an arm lift?

Liposuction is not always necessary for every patient. In cases where excess fat is minimal, liposuction may not be required. However, if there are significant pockets of fat that need to be addressed, liposuction can be done with the arm lift for enhanced results. 

What is the most common complication with arm lift surgery? 

The most commonly reported complication is scarring. (5) This is more of a function of how a patient heals than of the arm lift techniques used. Scar healing in the arms or back is different from scar healing in the abdomen, thighs, or face, and healing in one area of the face or body cannot always accurately predict healing in the arms. Patients can easily mitigate scarring by closely following recovery instructions and using extended taping with steri strips, scar creams, or silicone gel to aid in the reduction of the visible scars. Most scars fade with time and within a year it is usually an imperceptibly thin surgical incision line. 

Are the results of an arm lift permanent? 

Surgical intervention with an arm lift can indeed be permanent as long as patients maintain their weight. With natural aging, skin laxity will develop but usually not to the extent that a patient needs a repeat arm lift procedure. 

Are arm lifts outpatient procedures? 

Arm lifts are outpatient procedures, the recovery is quick and general with minimal postoperative pain. You should have a trusted friend or family member take you home and help you with your general daily living needs for the next couple of days. 

How much downtime do I need after an arm lift? 

You should plan 1 to 2 weeks of downtime after an arm lift, during which you should focus on resting the arms without carrying weights. The day after surgery you will experience most of the swelling and discomfort which will subside in the ensuing days. The full recovery after an arm lift will take approximately six weeks. Some may experience skin numbness around the incision areas for up to four to six months until normal sensation slowly returns. 


  1. Rousseaux I, Robson S. Body Contouring, and Skin Tightening Using a Unique Novel Multisource Radiofrequency Energy Delivery Method. The Journal of Clinical and Aesthetic Dermatology. 2017;10(4):24-29.  
  2. Nagrath N, Winters R. Brachioplasty. PubMed. Published 2023. 
  3. Han HH, Lee MC, Kim SH, Lee JH, Ahn ST, Rhie JW. Upper Arm Contouring with Brachioplasty after Massive Weight Loss. Archives of Plastic Surgery. 2014;41(3):271-276. doi: 
  4. Di Pietro V, Colicchia GM, Cervelli V, Gentile P. Arm Contouring After Massive Weight Loss: Liposuction-Assisted Brachioplasty Versus Standard Technique. Journal of Cutaneous and Aesthetic Surgery. 2018;11(2):73-78. doi: 
  5. Sisti A, Cuomo R, Milonia L, et al. Complications associated with brachioplasty: a literature review. Acta Bio Medica : Atenei Parmensis. 2017;88(4):393-402. doi: