Surgery for Fat Arms

Surgery for Fat Arms

Doctor, what can I do about my fat arms or arms with loose skin?


Basically, it’s according to your skin condition and the size of your arms.  There are two treatments, the first is simple liposuction and the second is excision of the excess skin, called a brachioplasty.  The liposuction can be done under local or general anesthesia and leaves virtually no scar.  The small incision is about at the elbow level.  Liposuction is very successful for those with no sagging of the skin.  These are most often done on younger people or those who have not been exposed to excess sunshine for long periods of time.  As we all know, excess sun exposure causes loss of elasticity and loose skin.  The procedure is simple and takes less than an hour, according to how much fat is to be suctioned out.  A pressure dressing is required for a week or two.  As in all surgical procedures, there is swelling, and with liposuction, it is several months before you see the final outcome.


The second procedure is for those people with excess skin.  The skin must be removed, which leaves a scar on the inside of the arm from the arm pit to the elbow.  The scar may be conspicuous, but it is in an inconspicuous location.  Sometimes a scar revision is called for at a later date.  This is usually not necessary in older patients with only excess skin.  If the patient has both excess fat and skin, both liposuction and the brachioplasty may be needed, and they are performed at the same time.  The brachioplasty is usually performed under general anesthesia.


Large arms give the perception of a large person, even in someone with normal weight. Regardless of the procedure required, surgery for large arms or arms with hanging skin is universally appreciated by patients.

Author Info

E. Ronald Finger MD