Brazilian Butt Lift - what are the odds of it not working?

I'm 5'4 at 125lbs. I'm worried that I may not have enough fat to harvest or that there may be no change to the appearance of my butt post-recovery. I don't want to spend $16500 for surgery if I don't achieve the result that I wanted so I need to know what are the odds. I'm healthy and do light cardio 4 days a week. I work and reside outside of USA so I will have to travel to the closest city (NYC) to have the surgery done and to recover. Any suggestions as to where I can stay to recover following surgery?

Doctor Answers 2

Brazilian Butt Lift - what are the odds of it not working?

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The critical factor in the process will be your choice of surgeon.  There is great variability in surgical ability to remove fat in thinner patients.  One surgeon may be able to remove only 400 cc of fat, while another surgeon may be able to remove 1600 cc of fat in that same patient.   Another factor is that you want to look natural and smooth without looking like you have had surgery.  Liposuction is a very precision oriented task in thinner patients.  Then you want the plastic surgeon to transfer as much fat as possible, so that even after resorption of fat you are left with something impressive.

Kenneth Hughes, MD

Los Angeles, CA

Do I have enough fat for a Brazilian Butt Lift?

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Hi and thanks for your question.  It is a common one!

How much fat you need really does depend on your goals.  Typically 3-4L of liposuction aspirate will give about 1L of re-injectable fat.  Of that fat, one can expect a 70-80% fat cell survival.  Therefore, if your surgeon thinks that she or he could harvest a few liters of fat, you could expect about 300-400cc difference on each side.  If you want to know how much that would be, measure out 400g of rice and put it in an old stocking.  That will give you an idea.

However, in my mind, the biggest advantage in a Brazilian Butt Lift is not necessarily the volume but the shaping that is done.  It is the subtraction of fat from the flanks that improves the silhouette or outline that makes the most significant cosmetic difference.

Hope this helps!

Robin Evans, MD, FRCSC
British Columbia Plastic Surgeon

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.