What is a Brazilian Butt Lift or BBL?
Brazilian butt lifts or a BBL for short is a surgery that is meant to give you a bigger butt or a shapely fat bottom. This is a surgery that reshapes and enhances the buttocks or gluteal area providing you with an uplifted and rounded buttock profile. In the past ten years, this procedure has become increasingly popular worldwide. The most frequent methods for enlarging and reshaping your buttocks are fat grafting using your own natural fatty tissue, popularly referred to as the Brazilian butt lift. Buttocks implants made of silicone are also available but have many downsides and are not offered by Dr. Gruber.
Reasons to Consider a BBL or Butt Lift
- If your buttocks are small for your body frame and you want a more balanced look
- If your bottom is flat or square and you would like more curves
- If weight loss or the aging process has left your bottom loose, sagging, or flat
- If clothes and swimwear do not fit properly on your figure
- If you just want a bigger or shapely fat bottom
Pros and Cons of getting a Brazilian Butt Lift
- Clothes and swimwear will fit better.
- Your body will appear more shapely and proportionate.
- Your buttocks will be firmer, rounder and uplifted, creating a more youthful and curvaceous appearance.
- It is possible for for some of the fat to be reabsorbed, causing asymmetry.
- If you are very slender you may not have enough fat to transfer.
- Because of postoperative swelling, it may take three to six months before the full effect of this surgery is evident.
Are you a Good Candidate for a BBL?
If you desire to have a fuller and more shapely buttocks, and you have enough fat in other areas of your body that can be harvested for fat transfer, then you may be a good candidate. You must also be realistic about this procedure, because fat transfer is not always predictable as to how much will remain, and you must be willing to go through the healing process. As for health considerations, all patients must be in good health without any problems that would increase the risk of infection or impair healing.
How is a Brazilian Butt Lift procedure performed?
Brazilian butt lifting is performed by Dr. Gruber using a process called Autologous fat transfer. This procedure takes fat from one area of your body and uses it to enhance and reshape your buttocks.
- Liposuction with suction tubes (cannulas) is used to remove fatty tissue from areas of your body with excess tissue, such as the abdomen, hips, back, or thighs.
- The fat is then processed for fat transfer.
- The fat is re-injected using syringes connected to cannulas.
- Very small incisions are needed for injecting the fat, but these incision sites are easily hidden by clothing.
- The fat is grafted in layers at multiple levels, with the cannula moving back and forth to ensure that a smooth, linear deposit of fatty tissue is left to reshape and augment the buttocks area.
What will my BBL incisions and scars be like?
The liposuction incisions are very small and just large enough to allow the suction tube, or cannula, to go under the skin and remove the fat. The incisions used for injecting the fat into the buttock regions are equally small. After healing, there can be very small scars on some patients which is inevitable, but these are very hard to see.
Your initial consultation appointment
During your initial consultation, you will have the opportunity to discuss your cosmetic goals. Dr. Gruber will evaluate you as a candidate for buttock augmentation and clarify what a buttock augmentation can do for you. Understanding your goals and medical condition, both alternative and additional treatments may be considered.
Dr. Gruber will examine your buttocks and most likely take photos for your medical records. She will consider:
- The size and shape of your buttocks
- The quality of your skin
- What kind of augmentation is appropriate depending on your goals and body type
- Appropriate fat donor sites
You should come to the consultation prepared to discuss your complete medical history. This will include information about:
- Previous surgeries
- Past and present medical conditions
- Allergies and current medications
It is important for you to provide complete information. If you are planning to lose a significant amount of weight, be sure to tell your plastic surgeon. She may recommend that you stabilize your weight prior to undergoing surgery.
Your Treatment Plan
Based on your goals and physical characteristics, Dr. Gruber will share recommendations and information with you, including:
- The approach to your surgery, including the type of procedure or combination of procedures.
- Outcomes that you can anticipate.
- Your projected financial investment for the procedure.
- Associated risks and complications.
- Options for anesthesia and type of surgical facility.
- What you need to prepare for your surgery.
- What you can expect to experience after surgery.
- Show before-and-after photos of cases similar to yours and answer any questions
How do I prepare for a BBL procedure?
Dr. Gruber will provide you with preoperative instructions, answer any questions you may have, take a detailed medical history, and perform a physical exam to determine your fitness for surgery.
In advance of your procedure, Dr. Gruber will ask you to:
- Stop smoking at least two weeks before undergoing surgery to promote better healing.
- Avoid taking aspirin, certain anti-inflammatory drugs, and some herbal medications that can cause increased bleeding.
Buttock augmentation is usually performed on an outpatient basis. Be sure to arrange for someone to drive you home after surgery and to stay with you at least the first night following surgery.
What can I expect on the day of my procedure?
Your buttock augmentation surgery will be performed at the outpatient surgery center or our office-based surgical suite. Most buttock augmentation procedures take at least two to three hours.
Medications are administered for your comfort during the surgical procedure.
If you choose to be completely awake, you may have your procedure done in the office. If you prefer general anesthesia or sedation you may have your procedure in the outpatient surgery center.
For your safety during the surgery, various monitors will be used to check your heart, blood pressure, pulse, and the amount of oxygen circulating in your blood.
After your procedure is completed, you will be taken into a recovery area, where you will continue to be closely monitored. After fat transfer, you will have a compression garment over the liposuction areas.
You will be permitted to go home after a short observation period.
Dr. Gruber will discuss how long it will be before you can return to your normal level of activity and work. After surgery, you and your caregiver will receive detailed instructions about your postsurgical care, including information about:
- Activity and Showering
- Dressings, Bandages and Garments
- Normal symptoms you will experience
- Potential signs of complications
Recovery for BBL – What to Expect After the Surgery
Immediately after your BBL
The incisions where the cannula entered may drain fluids for several days. You will wear special garments provided by Dr. Gruber for several weeks.
When the anesthesia wears off, you may have some pain. If the pain is extreme or long-lasting, contact our office. You will also have some swelling after the surgery. In some cases, this swelling will remain for weeks or even months.
Recovery time frame after BBL
It is important that you follow all patient care instructions provided. This will include information about wearing compression garments, care of your drains, taking an antibiotic if prescribed, and the level and type of activity that is safe. Dr. Gruber will also provide detailed instructions about the normal symptoms you will experience and any potential signs of complications. It is important to realize that the amount of time it takes for recovery varies greatly among individuals.
The first two weeks
The recovery period is slightly longer and more painful in the buttock area, because this body region is used for physical activities such as walking, running, and even standing.
When transported home or to your first postoperative follow-up visit, you will be instructed to lie on your stomach in the back seat of the car to avoid pressure on your buttocks. This position should also be used to maneuver and stand for the first 3 days.
You will also be instructed to lie on your stomach or side with bolsters while sleeping and while watching TV or reading.
You can expect some bruising and swelling in the buttock area during recovery; this may spread up to the abdominal or thigh area. This is normal and will begin to subside after a few days or weeks.
Your buttocks may be sore and painful, but this usually begins to resolve after just a few days. Pain medication will be prescribed for the pain.
No sitting will be permitted for the first TWO WEEKS (except for toileting). After this time you can sit with a soft pillow placed beneath your hamstring muscles but not touching your buttock, so that your buttock is in the air and there is no pressure on the newly augmented buttock.
Weeks two to eight
Direct pressure must be kept off the buttocks for at least six weeks, so sitting without a pillow is not allowed for that period.
You must wear a body garment for six to eight weeks.
The final results of your buttock augmentation may be initially obscured by swelling. When the swelling subsides, sometimes taking three to six months, your true results will be more evident.
After fat grafting, you can return to work, drive, or go to the movies after about 2 weeks, but you must use a pillow when sitting so that there is no pressure on your buttocks. You can resume normal activities and exercise after six weeks.
How Long Will the Results Last?
Under normal circumstances, the results of your BBL surgery will be long-lasting.
After a successful fat transfer buttock augmentation, the fat that remains will stay there for the rest of your life. Like the rest of the tissue in your body, this fat will grow and age with you.
Although the procedure improves the shape and contour of your buttocks, you should make necessary lifestyle changes to maintain the appearance of your new shape. A healthy diet and exercise regimen can be incorporated into your daily routine to maintain your look.
Cost or Price of BBL or Butt Lift
The national average cost for a surgeons fee for a BBL is about $6000. There are additional costs including the facility fees, anesthesia, and other that may average around $3000. The total price or cost for a BBL is therefore around $9000. This does not include additional liposuction beyond that required for fat transfer. Dr. Gruber’s price is similar to that of other experienced and skilled plastic surgeons.
Complications of Brazilian Butt Lifts
Fortunately, significant complications from BBL are infrequent. Your specific risks for buttock augmentation will be discussed during your consultation.
All surgical procedures have some degree of risk. Some of the potential complications of all surgeries are:
- Adverse reaction to anesthesia
- Hematoma or seroma (an accumulation of blood or fluid under the skin that may require removal)
- Infection and bleeding
- Changes in sensation
- Allergic reactions
- Damage to underlying structures
- Unsatisfactory results that may necessitate additional procedures
Other risks specific to BBL are outlined below:
- Fat absorption – may be as much as 50% – which may produce asymmetry, making this procedure more difficult to predict. Two to three fat grafting sessions are recommended over time to attain the desired “look”
- Any complications or changes in shape may require additional surgery.
- Rarely, fat migration into the blood vessels causes blockage. This complication can lead to severe health issues. Dr. Gruber will discuss this issue at your consultation.