It’s not unusual for massive weight loss patients to develop redundant upper arm tissue. When this occurs it can represent a significant aesthetic deformity that can adversely impact self-esteem and self- image. When sag of this magnitude is present, the majority of patients require a full brachioplasty.
This procedure involves making an incision that extends from the axilla to the elbow. This approach removes excess skin in the vertical and transverse dimensions. Unfortunately, it’s virtually impossible to hide scars in this location. For this reason, brachioplasty patients are often dependent upon their wound healing characteristics for a good result. In other words, when wounds heal nicely, scars can be imperceptible; conversely, some patients will have notable scars.
The vast majority of patients tend to heal these incisions nicely, and the aesthetic results are excellent. Unfortunately, some patients form exuberant scar tissue, which can be very noticeable. When this situation occurs, these scars represent a significant aesthetic deformity which is difficult to hide. Under these circumstances, scar revision and long sleeve shirts may be the only options available for patients.
In the post-operative period, various maneuvers can minimize scarring. These include massage, topical creams, and silastic. If you’re considering this procedure it’s important to understand the potential for scarring and its irreversible nature. The majority of patients have excellent results, but occasionally patients are unhappy with scarring and request scar revision.