Brazilian Butt Lift: Examining The World’s Most Dangerous Cosmetic Surgery
Oh my God, would you look at her butt?
When Sir Mix-A-Lot released his 1992 smash hit, “Baby Got Back”, not even he could have imagined the increasing demand for bigger backsides almost 30 years later. In fact, what was once ridiculed and mocked has now, having bigger butts, has now spearheaded the demand for plastic surgery with butt lifts becoming the fastest growing cosmetic surgery in the world.
Now while some may say advise that you buy it, if you’re not born with it, some doctors would strongly advise against it.
While chatting with TMZ Live, famous plastic surgeon and star of Botched Dr. Terry Dubrow shares that a Brazilian Butt Lift (BBL) is one of the worst things you can do to your body,
“It’s extraordinarily dangerous,” Dr. Dubrow shared with TMZ. “It turns out that it’s the most dangerous, not only plastic surgery procedure, it’s the most dangerous operation there is with the highest fatality rate.”
With that said, we think it’s time we got behind one of the world’s most popular, and possibly most dangerous cosmetic surgeries.
What is the Brazilian Butt Lift (BBL)?
According to the American Board of Cosmetic Surgery, the Brazilian Butt Lift is a cosmetic procedure that involves the transfer of fat in order to augment the size and shape of the buttocks without the use of implants .
The procedure, which can cost more than $10 000, was pioneered by the Brazilian doctor Ivo Pitanguy. According to Pitanguy, whose patient list allegedly included Frank Sinatra and Sophia Loren, beauty was a human right.
“Ultimately, beauty is a sense of well-being,” says Pitanguy.
In 1960, Pitanguy founded one of the world’s first plastic surgery academies, and it was here that surgeons learned the art of the BBL. As such, it wasn’t long before the practice gradually traveled to the mainstream.
The growth of the BBL procedure
According to the International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, butt augmentations have increased by 65.9% since 2015, and butt lifts have increased by 77.6% since 2015. Furthermore, butt augmentations increased by 38.4% in 2019 and butt lifts by 25.5% in the same year.
According to British aesthetic surgeon Dr. Lucy Glancey, the popularity of the BBL is thanks to one woman: Kim Kardashian, whose body has had quite an impact on society. Dr. Mark Mofid, a leading American BBL surgeon, echoed these thoughts, adding that the influence of women like Jennifer Lopez and Nicki Minaj, as well as the impact of social media, “had really popularized the beauty of feminine curves”.
How does the operation work?
A BBL works in two parts: first, the surgeon will retrieve the fat (harvesting), and then they will inject the fat into your butt, in order to create the desired effect (grafting).
The surgeon will begin to make small incisions on the harvest sites so that they can retrieve the fat. Harvest sites are discussed beforehand, and they usually include your stomach or thigh area.
The fat is not immediately grafted but is processed so that anything that can compromise the grafting process – debris, dead cells – is removed.
Your surgeon will now inject the harvested fat into the desired areas of the buttocks. The amount of fat that they inject will depend on the requested size and shape.
The recovery period
While bruising and swelling are expected, you can generally go back to work a few days after the procedure. However, you might want to avoid putting pressure on the area, so we suggest sleeping on your stomach and avoiding strenuous exercise.
Speaking to Harper’s Bazaar, plastic surgeon David Shafer said that most of the swelling and bruises will heal during the first several weeks and this is when you can go back to the gym and be approved for travel. The last stage of recovery is where any remaining swelling will resolve, and the transferred fat has pretty much settled, and you’ll have a proper idea of what your new butt looks like.
With that said, Shafer says that it’s important to manage your expectation as the fat does take time to settle. In fact, Shafer notes that only up to 80% of the grafted fat survives, so many patients may need to revise some aspect of the surgery in the future.
“In most cases, 70 to 80 percent of the grafted fat survives while some of it absorbs,” Shafer says. “The fat is living tissue and will change with weight fluctuations in the body, so if you lose weight, the fat can shrink just like anywhere else on your body. Likewise, if you gain weight, the fat can expand just like anywhere else on your body when you gain weight.”