The excisional location and the resultant scar can have two variables, the location on the arm (inner or back) and the pattern of the scar. (straight or wavy) Plastic surgeons are mixed about where the scar should be placed and numerous surgeons any and all of these possible arm lifting scar locations and types. There are devout advocates for the different arm lift scars, each position stating that it offers a superior scar result.
In the October 2013 issue of the Annals of Plastic Surgery, a paper was published entitled ‘Optimal Placement of a Brachioplasty Scar – Survey Results’. This study addresses the issue of where and how to place the arm lift scars based on a population survey. Using a model’s arm in different position, an arm lift scar was photo-shopped onto the inside and back of the arm as well as in a straight line and a sinusoidal pattern creating four possible arm lift scar appearances. Online surveys were then conducted to assess the scar variables and rate them in their visual acceptability between the general public, plastic surgeons and actual patients who had undergone an arm lift procedure.
Using approximately 135 survey responses, the straight line inner arm scar proved to be the most favorable while the inner arm scar that was sinusoidal was rated as the worst. Between these two extremes were the back of the arm scar in which a straight line was rated better than a wavy or sinusoidal one. Even with all other variables were considered (age group, gender) the inner arm straight line scar was preferred. In addition, the survey showed that a longer scar was viewed more favorably than leaving any residual hanging skin.