Was Sir Mix-a-lot Right? The Skinny on Buttock Surgery
Apparently my ship has FINALLY COME IN. After all these years of lamenting about my rather large derriere, which I’ve always said one could set a table on - I am now sporting a feature that many women now actively seeking to enhance on their own bodies. That’s right - Kim Kardashian and I are taking the world by storm with our well-endowed buttocks and women everywhere are clamoring to have the ability to balance a champagne glass on their bottom. Okay, I might be exaggerating a bit and of course, the term LARGE derriere is subjective and I’m pretty sure NO WOMAN is paying for one that isn’t tight and upright, (so in that regard my bottom has many more squats in its future,) but there is a definite trend in the beauty industry that seems to be taking shape as celebrities like Jennifer Lopez and Kim K strut their prominent bums.
I know… I too am still in shock that the phrase ‘bigger is better’ applies here – but there’s no denying that the attention being paid to the buttocks seems to have skyrocketed and plastic surgeons are seeing an increasing demand for all types of buttock plastic surgery. But… before you sign up to increase the size of your butt there are a few things you need to be aware of according to board-certified plastic surgeon, Dr. Stanley Okoro. Here, he shares the lowdown on whether or not you are a candidate for a buttock procedure as well as the variety of options available.
Melissa Chapman: What is the difference between a buttock implant, a buttock lift, Brazilian butt lift and a buttock threadlift? Is there any reason why the Brazilian butt lift seems to be so in demand?
Dr. Okoro: A buttock implant is a silicone implant whereas a Brazilian butt lift is fat transfer to the buttocks. It uses the patient’s own fat to increase the buttock volume and contour. The Brazilian butt lift is deemed more popular because we use the patient’s own fat and not a foreign object. A buttock lift is usually performed for those patients that have a lot of excess skin after massive weight loss. Buttock thread lift is a procedure that uses sutures (thread) to lift the buttocks. A thread lift can temporally lift the buttock, but the results will not last. Most people are unable to see the results after 1 year. It provides temporary minimal results. It costs less and has minimal downtime. Ultimately, you get what you pay for in plastic surgery.
MC: What are the advantages to using native fat (if any) into the buttock vs. synthetic or silicone implants?
Dr. Okoro: The only native fat implant is the fat grafting that is harvested using liposuction from the patient’s body. The advantage of using one’s fat over a silicone implant is that your body will not have a reaction to your fat. The body recognizes it as yours. It may however react to a foreign body, the silicone implant. Also, once the fat survives, it can potentially stay there for life.
MC: How is each procedure done, including type of anesthesia used and is it necessary or better for a physician to use an ultrasound during the procedure to guide you?
Dr. Okoro: Most of these procedures are usually performed under general anesthesia or IV sedation. Although, an ultrasound is not necessary for either procedure – the fat grafting [BBL – Brazilian Butt Lift] or the silicone implants, some surgeons use an ultrasound to guide them during the procedure. This can potentially increase the cost of the procedure. Most plastic surgeons do not use ultrasound assisted liposuction for buttock enhancement procedure.
MC: How long is the recovery period after a buttock implant/fat transfer graft in order for a patient to be able to sit and exercise with no discomfort?
Dr. Okoro: For fat transfer to the buttocks, we recommend patients refrain from sitting for at least 2 weeks following these procedures. This is to protect the fat graft. We also recommend 2 weeks for implants to allow healing around the implant. Following that time, a person may return to sitting; however it is often recommended that they put as little pressure on the buttock for the next couple of weeks.
MC: What are the risks and side effects of the buttock implant procedure?
Dr. Okoro: Risks associated with the buttock implant procedure are the same for all procedures requiring surgery and anesthesia. The most common risks are infection, poor healing and implant malposition. It’s important for the patient to discuss these risks with their plastic surgeon. These risks are less when performed by a board-certified plastic surgeon who is experienced in buttock enhancement procedures. Members of the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS) are all board-certified plastic surgeons who are especially trained in aesthetic surgery.
MC: Who is not a candidate for any butt augmentation or lift? Who is not a candidate for a fat transfer procedure?
Dr. Okoro: Individuals who have minimal amount of fat are not ideal candidates for fat grafting as they do not have the ideal amount of fat to harvest and transfer to the buttock and hips. This individual would likely require a buttock implant. Patients with a silicone allergy are not ideal candidates for a buttock implant. Each patient however needs to be evaluated individually in order to determine their best method of enhancing the buttock.
MC: Here is the bottom line: Whether you choose to have your own fat put into your buttocks, which to me sounds like a dream come true, the ability to move my fat into the right place. For those of you who don’t have extra fat to spread around you can use silicone implants. ALWAYS seek an experienced board-certified plastic surgeon and do your homework.