What is Fat Transfer to the Buttocks?
The brazilian butt lift (BBL) is a surgical procedure that was developed to add volume to the buttocks while simultaneously giving them a tighter, more lifted appearance. It’s a procedure that’s completely natural, using the body’s own fat to create a more sculpted, better proportioned physique.
BBL is used to create a shapelier appearance, removing fat from areas of the body that need less of it and adding it to the buttocks, precisely where it’s needed most. Diet and exercise don’t always lead to perfect proportions. To get more voluptuous curves in all the right places, surgery is often necessary.
How is the Surgery performed?
Fat transfer is used to perform the brazilian butt lift surgery. The procedure is a multi-stage process that begins with liposuction to remove fat cells from the abdomen, back, inner thighs, or some other area of the body that needs less volume. During this stage of the fat transfer procedure, surgeons carefully sculpt the body to create a slimming effect in areas that need less fat. Creating symmetry is an important goal during this stage. Doctors may harvest fat from more than one area of the body to create the most pleasing contours and to achieve a balanced appearance. The fat cells that have been removed are then processed using a special proprietary method that will help them survive the next stage of the procedure: transplantation.
Fat cells that are removed from one part of the body are purified and fortified using a special procedure before being transferred to the buttocks. This stage of the procedure is essential in helping the fat cells survive the transfer to their new location.
After the fat cells have been removed from one area of the body and processed for transplantation, the surgeon then uses a small cannula to insert the fat cells into the buttocks. Typically, this procedure is done without general anesthesia, which makes the surgery much safer and more comfortable for patients. Instead patients are given a local anesthetic and sedation to make them comfortable. There are few or no stitches required. Patients can return to work within 7 to 10 days, but they won’t be able to sit directly on their buttocks for about 3 weeks.
The cost of a brazilian butt lift will vary based on a number of factors including the city where the procedure is performed, how many areas of the body are treated with liposuction, the type of liposuction performed to remove the fat, the expertise of the surgeon, and whether the surgery is scheduled to take place in a clinic or a hospital. Surgical skill is a vitally important factor to consider when searching for a BBL surgeon because fat transfer is a procedure that takes experience and expertise in order for it to be successful.
Certain aspects of a brazilian butt lift are fixed fees such as operating room costs and the surgeon’s fees. Surgeons in bigger cities may charge more than surgeons in less populated areas, but often surgeon’s fees are fixed based on their location and the demand for brazilian butt lifts in their area.
Other surgical factors add to the cost, such as the volume of fat to be removed, the number of areas of the body to be treated with liposuction, and the type and amount of anesthesia to be used. Since these surgical conditions are patient-dependent, they can only be determined following an initial consultation with a brazilian butt lift Surgeon. Most patients can expect to pay between $7500 and $20,000 for the procedure.
Which Lipo technique is the best for Fat Transfer?
Laser-assisted machines or Ultrasound assisted devices will damage the fat cells - leaving the fat unsuited for a later transfer to other parts of the body such as the breasts or buttocks. That is why doctors prefer not to use SmartLipo or a similar fat cell disruptive technique for fat transfers.
To extract fat without destroying it, some specialists opt for gentle techniques such as WaterLipo. Water Liposuction injects a stream to dislodge gently the fat, leaving most of the harvested cells intact. The fat can be later processed (purified) for a reinjection in other body parts that want to be enhanced in volume. Water Lipo is more suited for Fat Transfer than LAL (Laser Assisted Lipo).
Finally, some doctors perform fat grafting using the standard tumescent liposuction, as they prefer to not infiltrate the cells with water and rather use the saline tumescent solution. The size of the cannula and the opening also play a factor, larger bore cannulas minimize the risk of cell damage.
Are You a Candidate?
The best candidates for a brazilian butt lift are non-smoking patients who are in good general health. Fat transfer requires the body’s ability to generate a healthy blood supply to the newly implanted fat cells so excellent health is important. The ideal patient would have at least 15 to 20 pounds of excess fat on their bodies that can be used for transfer to the buttocks.
A patient’s overall weight and the location of fat on their bodies is an important determining factor in terms of brazilian butt lift candidacy. The fat must be distributed on the body in locations that are accessible to the surgeon using liposuction. For example, fat in the abdomen is only accessible if it’s located on top of the abdominal muscles. Fat that’s located around the organs and under the abdominal muscles cannot be used for a BBL.
Often 6 to 7 liters of fat will be removed from the body using liposuction, but only 1.5 to 2.0 liters will be usable for transfer to the buttocks. It’s important for the surgeon to be able to harvest plenty of fat cells for purification because much of the fat won’t be transferrable. So patients must have some excess fat on their bodies in order for the procedure to be a success. Patients who are underweight may be advised to gain weight in order to become a good candidate for the procedure.
Good candidates should also have realistic expectations about the procedure and the ability to properly care for themselves for an adequate period of time following their surgery.
The Recovery Process
After a BBL surgery, patients should be prepared to properly care for themselves and the newly transferred fat cells in order to achieve the best outcomes from the procedure. The surgery itself could take between 2 and 6 hours depending on the amount of fat to be harvested and the number of areas on the body to be treated. Some doctors may keep patients overnight for observation following the procedure. On the first night after you’re dismissed from the hospital, it would be best to ask a friend of loved-one to help you out around the house.
How well a patient takes care of themselves following a brazilian butt lift procedure will often determine whether fat cells successfully develop an adequate blood supply and survive or not. Patients should plan ahead for their brazilian butt lift recovery to ensure that they get the very best results from their procedure. Below are some general guidelines to follow during recovery from a brazilian butt lift.
- Follow your doctor’s instructions.Your doctor will give you some general as well as some specific instructions to follow during recovery. Follow these instructions exactly.
- Take medications as scheduled.You will likely receive both pain medication and antibiotics to prevent the development of an infection during the recovery period. Take these medications religiously. Set a reminder on your smartphone or some other device to help you remember to take your meds religiously and on the proper schedule. Avoiding infection will speed up recovery and help you achieve the best results possible from your procedure.
- Wear compression garments as prescribed.Your doctor will likely give you compression garments to wear as your body heals from the liposuction. These compression garments will help your skin heal properly to give you the smoothest, most natural-looking results. Wear the garments as your doctor instructs you to do. Wait for his permission to stop wearing them.
- Do not sit directly for at least 3 weeks.Patients are advised not to sit directly on the freshly transferred fat cells for at least 3 weeks. It’s best to plan ahead for this facet of the recovery process and make sure that you have furnishings and an appropriate space to keep weight off your buttocks. Most patients sleep on their stomachs or their sides to keep weight off their buttocks. Your doctor may also provide you with a special inflatable pillow to use occasionally during the recovery process.
- Avoid strenuous exercise for at least a month.Your doctor will advise you about when you can return to your normal workout schedule. Light exercise is often advised for patients after a brazilian butt lift procedure, but in light doses at first, graduating to more and more exercise over time. Talk with your doctor and get permission to increase your exercise during recovery
- Eat healthy food.Eat plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables as you recover from the brazilian butt lift. By eating healthy, nutritious food, you increase the odds that new fat cells will survive transplantation. You may need help preparing food during the recovery process. Plan ahead to make sure you can have nutritious meals during the initial stages of recovery.
- Drink plenty of water.After surgery, your body will need to detox so it will need lots of water. By drinking plenty of water, you can also help your body build up the necessary blood supply to feed newly transferred fat cells.
- Don’t smoke.Smoking decreases circulation and the new fat cells need a solid blood supply to survive. So avoid cigarettes during recovery.
- Avoid alcohol.Alcohol can dehydrate the body, but during recovery you need to stay hydrated to help build a new blood supply to transferred blood cells.
How much fat volume is needed?
Your doctor will determine the ideal amount of fat that should be harvested from other areas of the body for transfer to the buttocks. A variety of factors can influence the amount of fat to be harvested to achieve the best results, but the overall proportional balance of the body from head-to-toe is always a consideration.
Can I sit after surgery?
Patients are advised to keep weight off their buttocks for the first 3 to 4 weeks after surgery. Sitting on the newly transplanted fat cells can diminish blood supply to that region, resulting in the death of some or all of the fat cells. Instead of sitting, patients can position themselves on their sides or their stomachs or use a special inflatable pillow to keep most of their weight on other areas of the body.
What are the risks involved?
All surgeries involve some amount of risk. The most serious risks to consider are excessive blood loss, infection, the development of blood clots, fat embolism, deep vein thrombosis, cardiac arrest, pulmonary complications, and adverse reactions related to anesthesia. Other risk considerations include the possibility of bruising, numbness or pain, and the possible need for revisional surgery.
Do compression garments put too much pressure on the transplanted fat cells?
Compression garments are prescribed for use on the areas of the body treated with liposuction. They help the skin heal properly so that it looks toned and tightened. The garments should be snug, but not overly tight. Compression garments will not put considerable pressure to the fat cells. There should be no risk of fat cell loss wearing a garment.
How painful is the procedure?
During the brazilian butt lift procedure patients feel no pain, though they may feel pressure or other sensations. After surgery, patients often feel sore and bruised, but pain medication is prescribed to make the recovery process more comfortable. Over the course of a week, pain medication becomes mostly unnecessary.
Can I have sex after the surgery?
Because fat transfer procedures require strict adherence to recovery guidelines in order for the procedure to be successful, sex must often be postponed for at least 10 days following surgery (depending on your doctor’s recommendations).