Our Plastic Surgeons
Skilled and experienced plastic surgery experts
All four specialists are New Zealand trained plastic and cosmetic surgeons with a vast surgical experience over many years and many thousands of patients.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is this for me?
If you are in the process of losing weight, or intend to do so, it is a good idea to reach your target before contemplating an arm reduction. If you lose weight after surgery, your arms may become looser again and need to be retightened.
During your first consultation with your surgeon he will examine you carefully, take measurements, photographs, and assess the quality of your arm tissues. He will listen carefully to your concerns and expectations and only recommend a procedure if he thinks you will benefit from it.
What does the surgery involve?
In some cases, fat is first removed by liposuction then the skin is tightened towards the inside of the arm and towards the armpit. Sometimes little or no skin needs to be removed, ensuring minimal scaring, or a short scar high in the armpit.
For loose arms, a long ellipse of skin needs to be removed from the armpit to the inside of the elbow. The incisions are sewn up precisely with dissolving stitches to avoid stitch marks, and supported with tape. An elastic bandage is then applied. The scars from this can be significant.
The surgery can take one-and-a-half to two hours, and is often performed at the Institute’s day surgery facility.
Can it be done under local anaesthetic?
Brachioplasty can be done under local anaesthetic, however, if you need circumferential liposuction as well as skin removal, it is more comfortable under a general anaesthetic or intravenous sedation.
How long does recovery usually take?
After surgery you will be observed for an hour or two in the recovery room before being taken home by your support person. We can arrange an overnight stay at a nearby facility if you prefer. Although this is generally not a painful procedure, we will ensure you have adequate postoperative pain relief.
After surgery you will be advised to tape the scar for up to three months and to wear a supporting elastic sleeve for some of this time. We will review your progress as often as necessary for up to one year.
Returning to normal activity varies from one to three weeks, but strenuous exercise should be avoided for at least six weeks.
As with any cosmetic procedure, it takes time to see the final result. In the case of an arm reduction, it will be at least six months. You also should be aware that almost all body contouring procedures can be enhanced by a second procedure six months to a year later. This is because tightened skin always relaxes in the weeks after surgery and there is a limit as to how tightly your skin can be drawn during surgery and how much fat can be taken away without creating irregularities. The scarring from extended brachioplasty can take six months to fully mature, or longer in some cases.
Request a complimentary consultation
Meet with our nurses for a complimentary, no obligation cosmetic surgery consultation to discuss procedures, processes and costs