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Many people who desire a fuller, beautiful, curvy backside will opt for a buttocks augmentation with fat grafting (generally known as "Brazilian Butt Lift". This is a popular cosmetic procedure which uses fat transfer to provide a more curvaceous buttock without the use of an implant. Vaser Liposuction is generally used to both sculpt the surrounding area and collect the autologous fat (fat from your own body) to be injected. 



Figure 1:  BBL is one of the fastest growing plastic surgeries in America.

Brazilian Butt Lift's skyrocketing popularity

According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS), more than 20,300 buttock augmentations with fat grafting were performed in 2017 in the United States. Brazilian Butt Lift is by far the most popular buttock enhancing procedure nowadays and many significant advantages are accountable for patient's preference of this procedure over buttock implants and dermal fillers, and its steady increasing demand. 


Who is a good candidate for Brazilian Butt Lift ?

A VASER Liposuction with fat transfer to the buttocks (Brazilian Butt Lift (BBL) surgery is ideal for patients whose buttocks are: sagging, asymmetrical, flat, disproportionately small, and/or irregularly-shaped. To qualify for a BBL procedure, patients must be non-smokers (or willing to give up the habit for at least 12 weeks), in good general health, and able to avoid alcohol and caffeine for two weeks before the procedure and during the recovery period. Since every case is different, Dr. De La Cruz evaluates and assess his patients' candidacy for BBL during a initial consultation, based on their age, skin laxity, body shape and health status, among other factors.

What happens during a Brazilian Butt Lift procedure?

VASER Liposuction with fat transfer to the buttocks (Brazilian Butt Lift (BBL) is the latest trend in body sculpting. During a fat transfer procedure, excess fat is initially extracted from particular areas such as arms, abs, flanks, back and thighs in the liposuction phase of a BBL. The rendered fat is washed and purified, and then carefully injected with specially designed needles into areas that may need volume-enhancement, such as hips and/or buttocks, for a beautiful hourglass figure.  
















Figure 2:  Before and After Brazilian Butt Lift with 4D VASER Hi-Definition Liposuction performed by Dr. De La Cruz.

How long does Brazilian Butt Lift results last?

Brazilian Butt Lift (BBL) successful results can be permanent. Usually, a highly skilled and experienced plastic surgeon will achieve around 70% survival rate of the fat cells, and the rest will be harmlessly reabsorbed by the body. Patients can actively contribute on the success of the procedure and longevity of the results by following Dr. De La Cruz's post-operative recommendations.  

How much fat is needed for a Brazilian Butt Lift?

During the initial consultation with Dr. De La Cruz, he determines if adding volume to their patients' rear will be proportionately appropriate for their appearance and how much fat should be grafted. After the purification process, only 500cc to 1500cc of the rendered fat will be injected into each buttock. The volume of fat that can be safely injected into the hips and buttocks varies individually, and it will depend on the patient's anatomy and cosmetic goals. It would also depend on the amount of fat that can be harvested. One of the main considerations when evaluating a patient's candidacy for BBL surgery is whether they have enough fat stored in their body, so the surgeon can harvest enough fat cells to use during the fat transfer phase. For patients with insufficient fat deposits, Dr. De La Cruz may advice following a gain weight program before the BBL to qualify for the procedure. 

What is the recovery time for a Brazilian Butt Lift?

Every patient is unique and will have different recovery deadlines. The swelling, pain and bruising during the first week are significant, and most patients will have difficulties moving around, in general. However, Dr. De La Cruz will prescribe pain medication to handle any pain that might be involved and help his patients feel much more comfortable. After the first week, patients will notice that the swelling, soreness, and pain will begin to fade away. The short downtime needed for VASER Liposuction with fat transfer to the buttocks (BBL) makes it very convenient and appealing to patients, who may return to their work and regular activities as short as one week after surgery.   








Figure 3:  Minimal downtime for beautiful results with Brazilian Butt Lift surgery.

Buttock Implants vs. Brazilian Butt Lift

Brazilian Butt Lift is proven to be a safer procedure in comparison with buttock implants. Patients who have implants can experience pain and infection, and have trouble sitting on their buttocks for a longer period of time. Moreover, implant patients are more likely to develop seromas (lumps caused by an accumulation of serum within the tissue), and experience dehiscence and capsular contracture. Also, since BBL utilizes autologous fat (fat from your own body), the chance of allergic reactions to foreign substances, such as dermal fillers and implants, are reduced and the results are longer lasting. Recovery is also better with buttocks augmentation with fat grafting. BBL's patients can usually return to work one week after surgery, as opposed to those who receive buttock implants and would need at least two weeks to resume their regular activities. 


Post-Operative care to speed up Brazilian Butt Lift recovery

  • Follow a balanced diet which includes foods high in fiber (such as raw fruits and vegetables) and drinking plenty of water and fluids, since both pain medication and decreased activity may promote constipation. 

  • Start doing some light walking the night of the surgery to help prevent any blood clot formation in the legs. Dr. De La Cruz may recommend taking anticoagulant medication and wearing anti-embolism stockings as well.   

  • Take supplements like iron if you feel fatigued and vitamin C, as directed by Dr. De La Cruz, to boost your body's ability to heal.

  • Avoid cigarettes and heavy drinking because these habits reduce circulation throughout the body, leading to the degradation of new cells.

  • Wear your specialized compression garments around the clock (except for showering) for 6 months, to reduce swelling and help your skin contract smoothly to your new body's contours.

  • At least ten lymphatic massages sessions are required, starting 24 hours after the procedure, to eliminate excess lymph fluid, alleviate swelling and discomfort and also prevent complications such as seromas and contour irregularities (indentations and/or fibrosis).    

  • Avoid sitting and putting pressure in your buttocks for eight weeks. Patients may use the Brazilian Butt Lift pillow.

  • Do not exercise for two months.

  • Stomach sleeping for eight weeks. Dr. De La Cruz suggests to his patients having different pillows at hand and changing their necks' position from time to time, to feel more comfortable in bed. 

Safety in Brazilian Butt Lift surgery

More than 20,000 people had buttock augmentations in the United States last year and the number continues to grow according to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS). This procedure is fairly safe because of advances in technology. As with every surgery, there are some risks associated with BBL surgery, such as fat embolism (fat in injected into the bloodstream and travels to the lungs), numbness, bruising, infection, necrosis of fat or surrounding tissue, excessive blood loss, and deep vein thrombosis (DVT) among others. However, an experienced and highly trained plastic surgeon as Dr. De La Cruz can help diminish those risks significantly. 


What happens if patients gain weight or become pregnant after a Brazilian Butt Lift?

Typically, fat cells removed from the body during VASER Liposuction with fat transfer to the buttocks (Brazilian Butt Lift (BBL) do not return to the treated areas. BBL patients who have reported accumulation of fat deposits indicate that fats are more evenly distributed around the body. Assuming that a patient maintains a healthy lifestyle, fat tissues in the operated area do not come back. However, implementing healthy eating habits and regular exercise (taking advantage of the new increased metabolism after BBL surgery) is essential to keep stimulating weight loss and guarantee beautiful, long-lasting results. 


Cost of Brazilian Butt Lift surgery


Depending on the patient's particular situation, the price of Brazilian Butt Lift (BBL) may vary from $10,000 to $20,000 in the United States. Cost factors for buttock enhancement procedures include: Dr. De La Cruz's expertise and experience, anesthesia and facility fees, medications, manual lymphatic drainage massage sessions, CosmetAssure (a cosmetic insurance plan endorsed by the American Society of Plastic Surgeons), specialized compression garments and any other material needed to help patients heal properly. Our practice offers payment plans or financing through Care Credit or United Medical Care to help make BBL surgery more affordable. Otherwise, discounts for paying the full amount up-front, in cash or in cashier check, are also available.


Emmanuel De La Cruz MD, PLLC

» Contact Dr. De La Cruz today for more information by calling 832.520.1844

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