Brazilian buttock lift is perceived to be safer than butt implant. Instead of synthetic prosthesis, doctors reshape and augment the backside with the most natural material—i.e., the patient’s own fat derived from other areas of the body, typically the abdomen, flanks, and lower back.
Despite the impressive safety record of Brazilian buttock lift, news of fatal complication due to fat embolism has been circulating the Internet recently.
Fat embolism happens when fat particle or droplet is inadvertently injected into the blood vessels. In mild cases it simply causes low oxygen level in blood, but in serious conditions it leads to lung and brain impairment. According to medical literature, the risk of death is 10-20 percent.
However, fat embolism can be prevented with proper injection of fat. Hence, a prudent patient always ensures that her surgery is performed by a board-certified plastic surgeon—i.e., certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery.
The list below explains the basic guidelines known to improve the safety of Brazilian buttock lift.
- Avoiding the deeper muscle during injection
A US study has suggested that fat embolism generally happens when fat injection is performed deep into the gluteas muscle, which has large blood vessels. To prevent this complication, fat grafts are ideally injected into the existing buttock fat (more superficial layer than muscle).
Simply put, doctors with deep understand and respect of the anatomy can avoid fat embolism and other serious complications.
- Honeycomb or microdroplet injection technique
Beverly Hills plastic surgeon Dr. Tarick Smiley says the honeycomb or microdroplet fat injection (inoculation of less than 0.1 cc of fat at a time) increases the survival rate and helps achieve near permanent results from Brazilian buttock lift.
Furthermore, the injection technique, which also entails continuously moving the cannula (hollowed steel probe), prevents fat embolism that happens when fat is inadvertently injected into the blood vessels.
- Use of the most innovative liposuction devices
The use of blunt cannulas not just prevents accidental injection of fat into the blood vessel; studies have also suggested that it promotes higher survival rate of fat grafts (70 percent and higher).
- Accredited surgical facility
Dr. Smiley has previously posted a video on Snapchat explaining the importance of having one’s surgery in an accredited ambulatory center, which means that it has passed the rigorous patient safety standards imposed by health authorities.
Accredited surgical facilities are staffed by board-certified anesthesiologists and emergency personnel who can treat patient should an untoward event occur.