Buttock Surgery Overview

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A beautiful body is not just wonderful breasts or great legs, it is a harmonious whole. Having a shapely and well-rounded bottom adds to this harmony and creates a unified and beautiful appearance.

Although many people are dieting and exercising to reduce the size of their derrieres, there are some who feel that this area is too flat and lacks prominence. A flat butt can throw a normally-sized waist and bust out of proportion and can make clothing look ill-fitted. Worse, a too-small butt is not a problem that can be exercised or dieted away.


In addition to those who want a more prominent bottom, other people may complain of a bottom that has started to sag and has given way to time and gravity. People who have lost a great deal of weight either through diet and exercise programs or weight-loss (bariatric) surgery may also be left with a sagging rear and excess skin that they feel detracts from their appearance.

Now, cosmetic surgeons have created surgical procedures that can help you have the round butt you have always wanted. There are buttock augmentation procedures that can create a rounded and shapely bottom, either through the use of injections of fat from elsewhere in your body (also called a Brazilian butt lift) or by inserting implants (so-called butt implants), and there are buttock lift surgeries that can remove excess sagging skin and tissue and create a firm and contoured derriere.

Are you a Candidate for Buttock Augmentation?

No type of cosmetic surgery should be entered into without great thought. All surgery carries some risk, and butt implants and butt lifts are major surgery. The muscles and tendons of your buttocks and lower back take part in almost every action you do. Each time you stand up or sit down or turn your torso, the muscles of your buttocks and lower back move. Even standing still, your buttocks (along with the muscles of your abdomen and back) are making slight adjustments at all times to keep you standing upright. And let us not forget sitting. As you sit, all your weight rests on your buttocks and upper thighs. Your reshaped derriere must be able to bear the weight that is resting on your butt when you sit.

Recovery from buttock augmentation is difficult. Although you can go home the same day as your buttock lift or butt implant surgery, you will not be able to stay home alone. You will need to have someone stay with you for at least a day and perhaps longer to help you in getting up, cleaning yourself, getting meals for you, and other activities. You will need to walk around and move gently in the day or two after your surgery, but for the most part, you will be lying on your stomach as you recover.

If you are considering buttock augmentation or a butt lift procedure, you must be in overall good health. Any pre-existing medical problems, such as high blood pressure or asthma, should be under control. Make sure your doctor has your complete medical history and a complete list of all medications, vitamins and mineral supplements, and herbal products that you take. If you smoke, try to stop before having surgery, since smoking impedes healing.

You should also be in good mental health, since it takes a great deal of patience and emotional strength to get through surgery and recovery. Surgery on your buttocks will incapacitate you for a while, which can be upsetting, and any surgery can cause a period of depression that could exacerbate any pre-existing mental or emotional problems.

Health insurance will not cover the costs of butt implants or butt lifts because they are cosmetic surgery. Make sure you understand all the costs for the procedure, including the fees for anesthesia and any medical tests that are required. You will be responsible for these costs. However, financing can be arranged.

Most types of butt enhancement procedures are relatively new. Many cosmetic surgeons may have limited experience with them. Any licensed physician can perform any procedure whether he or she has experience with it or not. To ensure that you are in the hands of someone who has the experience and skill to give you the look you want, make sure you are dealing with a board-certified cosmetic surgeon. Ask to see his or her credentials and references, and look at butt implants before-and-after photos of people on whom he or she has done the surgery.

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What Is Buttock Augmentation?

Butt augmentation is a cosmetic surgical procedure to add fullness and roundness to the buttocks. Your butt can be augmented in either of two ways, by injecting fat taken from elsewhere in your body (fat grafting procedure), or by inserting synthetic butt implants. You can also have a buttock lift, which is a surgical procedure that removes excess skin and fat and reshapes the buttocks.

First, here is a bit about the anatomy upon which you sit. The bulk of each buttock is made up of two muscles, the gluteus maximus and the gluteus medius. The gluteus maximus straightens the leg at the hip when you walk, run, or climb, and raises your body from a sitting position. The gluteus medius moves the thigh out and rotates it to the side. These muscles are attached to the legs and to the pelvis, which is a circle of fused bones that supports the internal organs of your abdomen. There are bony prominences on the bottom of the pelvis that support your bodys weight in a sitting position. Most people have a layer of fat over the muscles and bones of their butt.

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Buttock Augmentation Procedures:

  • Brazilian Butt Lift or Butt Injections The most famous type of shape-modifying injections to the bottom is the Brazilian Butt Lift; although the procedure is also called fat injections, fat transfer, or fat grafting. It usually consists of a combination of liposuction around the buttocks and many injections of fat into the buttocks. The fat is your own fat that was harvested by liposuction from either around your buttocks or from your abdomen or elsewhere. This fat is then processed and purified before it is reinjected. (You can read more about liposuction.) Depending on the amount of augmentation needed, you may need to undergo a great deal of injections, which are made at various sites and depths in your buttocks.

The body may reabsorb some of this transferred fat, but most surgeons say that most of the fat will remain if it was processed correctly, and that the results will be lasting. There is swelling after the procedure, and the full results may not be clearly seen until after the swelling goes down in 1 to 3 months.

  • Butt Implants Butt implants are augmentations done by inserting a silicone implant into each buttock. This type of cosmetic surgery is growing in popularity, with 639 implants performed in 2006, up from 542 in 2005, according to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS).

Butt implants are solid silicone implants that can be inserted either under the gluteus muscles or under the skin and fascia (muscle sheath) to create a rounded, more prominent butt. They are generally placed in the top half of each buttock, so that you do not sit directly on them. Silicone butt implants are solid. They cannot leak or rupture like breast implants, which are silicone sacks filled with either saline or silicone gel. The implants come in several shapes and sizes and can also be custom-made.

Although butt implants, unlike silicone breast implants, cannot rupture, they can move out of place due to scarring or trauma. If an implant is displaced, your butt is going to look asymmetrical until the problem is corrected, which is done surgically.

Most butt implants are inserted through a short incision in the crease between your buttocks. Both implants can be inserted through the same incision. Because of the proximity of the incision to the anus, infection is a serious concern. Other sites for the incisions are in the crease under each buttock (the gluteal crease) or, rarely, above the buttock. Scars after butt implants will be visible with either of these incisions, although scars should be hidden in the gluteal crease after healing.

Some cosmetic surgeons prefer to use butt implants only on people who do not have enough body fat for butt enhancement with fat injections.

  • Buttock Lift A buttock lift is a surgical procedure to remove excess fat and skin on the buttocks and reshape them into a more aesthetically pleasing form. There were 3,710 buttock lift procedures in 2006, up from 1,356 in 2000, according to the ASPS.

A buttock lift is major surgery. An incision is made about where the lower back and upper buttocks meet, and skin and fat are removed. The skin of the buttocks is then lifted upward, and the incision is closed. Depending on how much fat and skin must be removed, the incision may reach around the hips. This incision will be hidden by clothing, including a bathing suit bottom, but will be visible when naked.

This type of butt lift surgical procedure may be especially beneficial after a large weight loss, such as that seen after weight-loss surgery such as stomach-stapling. It can be combined with a tummy tuck and a thigh lift into a procedure that is also called a body lift, or it can be combined with liposuction.

Butt injections, butt implants, and buttock lifts can be performed as outpatient surgery, where you go home the day of your surgery. However, you will need to arrange for someone to drive you home. All three types of procedures take from 1.5 to 3 hours to perform; longer if they are combined with other procedures. Butt enhancement can be done in a surgeons office, a freestanding surgical clinic, or a hospital.

There are several phases involved in butt enhancement surgery:

Preparation: During this phase, you are being prepped for surgery. Your surgeon will mark you to indicate where incisions will be made. These marks may be made while you are standing. The placement of these incision lines will be dictated by the procedure being done. At this time, you will be attached to monitors that will keep track of your vital signs and to an intravenous (IV) line.

Anesthesia: The choice of anesthesia used during the butt enhancement procedure should be discussed between you and your surgeon before the day of your surgery. With butt enhancement, the usual choice is general anesthesia, where you are unconscious throughout the surgery. However, some surgeons opt to use a type of anesthesia called twilight sleep, where you are asleep or barely awake.

Surgical Procedure: The surgical procedure begins after anesthesia is administered. The incisions will be made, and the surgery will be conducted. Once the incisions are closed, the surgical team will apply a dressing to protect the incisions and to keep tissue securely in place and reduce swelling. The bandaging may include elastic bandaging or a compression garment that is essentially a girdle.

Recovery: After surgery, you will wake up and be moved to a recovery area where you will be monitored for about 2 hours. You may feel pain, discomfort, nausea or cold. The staff can give you pain relievers, antinausea medications, warm blankets and other assistance. Some people feel emotionally upset as they come out of anesthesia, but this will pass.

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