Possible Complications from a Butt Lift

The butt lift is a common plastic surgery procedure with significant risks. Find out how to avoid some of these complications and better prepare for the BBL surgery outcomes.

The risk-to-benefit ratio of a Brazilian butt lift (BBL) depends on the proficiency of the plastic surgeon. They have to be board-certified, experienced, and maintain professionalism in their practice. Despite the associated dangers, the procedure is still gaining popularity because of its accompanying aesthetics.

BBL surgery can help you remove fat from an unwanted area and transfer it to the buttocks. Nevertheless, understanding the implications of a butt lift and the possible side effects is crucial. Thus, a person knows what they are getting into and can make an informed decision. It also encourages due diligence on plastic surgeons and their practice because the probability of risks depends on their qualifications.

What to Expect During A Butt Lift Procedure

A butt lift surgery has two main procedures – liposuction and fat transfer to the buttocks. The surgeon uses a metallic cannula to suction fat from a specific body area. Ideal locations to acquire fat are the abdomen and hips. The surgeon makes small surgical incisions to obtain fat.

The plastic surgeon then treats and grafts the fatty tissue in the buttocks to add volume and shape. The surgeon uses the metal rod to distribute fat until the spread evens out throughout the butt. Both procedures have associated risks.

The Side Effects of a Liposuction

Anesthesia risks

A person can develop an allergic reaction to anesthesia, also known as anaphylaxis. Accidental awareness during the procedure can occur. However, the anesthesiologist monitors anesthesia levels throughout the surgery to prevent accidental awareness.


Bruising is a common side effect after liposuction. It is a consequence of capillary injuries during the procedure because liposuction requires several surgical incisions. The wound worsens three days after surgery and persists for a month.


A person can develop sensation changes at the liposuction sites. It may occur as augmented sensitivity to pain or numbness.

Fluid Accumulation

Swelling after liposuction occurs because of inflammation and a build-up of lymphatic fluids.

Irregular Pigmentation

Most people do not experience post-surgery hyperpigmentation. Although anybody can get post-inflammatory, darker pigmented skin has a higher susceptibility to the condition.

Irregular Contours

The skin may appear bumpy or withered because of uneven liposuction, poor skin elasticity, and abnormal healing.

Lymphatic Discharge

It is typical to see blood and fluid draining from the fat removal incisions. The leakage looks clear with a tinge of blood. It will stop when the incisions heal.

Fat Transfer Side Effects

Bruising At the Site of Fat Injection

Most bruising worsens two weeks after the surgery. Patients also notice some residual discoloration around the surgical site. A little daily walking can help minimize bruising around the buttock area.

Mild Discomfort at the Site of Fat Deposition

Mild to moderate discomfort is common after the procedure. However, if the pain is unbearable or persists four to five weeks post-surgery, the patient may need to consult a plastic surgeon.

Contour Defects

There is a probability of developing asymmetry because of the scar that crosses the buttock’s curvature. It leaves a depression or groove that may require corrective surgery. Sometimes the asymmetry does not improve after healing or a reconstructive procedure.

Fat Embolism

Fat grafting on the buttocks can enter the bloodstream and lodge itself in the lungs. The probability of this side effect occurs when the surgeon places the fatty tissue on the muscle instead of the subcutaneous layer.


How Long Does a Butt Lift Last?

The BBL uses fat from a person’s body to enlarge the size of the buttocks. The procedure can last for several years because the filler is part of the person’s tissue. The butt lift is only semi-permanent because fat cells change with time. However, the person’s diet and degree of physical activity influence the procedure’s long-term effects.

Why is the BBL So Dangerous?

The Brazilian butt lift has the highest mortality rate of all fat transfer procedures. A 2017 report involving 692 surgeons worldwide shows that 3% of the corespondents’ patients died following the buttocks lift surgery. Thus, 21% of plastic surgeons participating in the study lost a patient because of this procedure.

The success rate of the procedure depends on the plastic surgeon’s proficiency. Therefore, Find a plastic surgeon with high success rates. Due diligence about their qualifications, reviews, and recommendations is crucial. Cost alone is insufficient for choosing a plastic surgeon for a buttock lift because the risks outweigh the costs.

Can Someone Develop BBL Complications Years Later?

The longevity of the BBL depends on your weight fluctuations. As long as an individual does not put on a lot of weight or lose it, the butt lift results should last for ten years or more. Therefore, diet and exercise are of utmost importance.

How Do You Know If You Have Fat Necrosis after a BBL?

Fat necrosis or fat cell death occurs when the body does not develop enough blood supply to keep the grafted fatty tissue alive. The fat cells eventually die because of insufficient blood supply. The affected area turns black, hard, and feels lumpy.

Can the Body Reject the Fat Transfer?

The fat is not dangerous because it comes from the patient’s body. It is rare for the body to reject this fat. The cause for concern is the fat placement. An embolism can occur if the plastic surgeon places the fat on the muscle tissue. The fat dislocates and finds its way into the circulation and eventually into the lungs. The procedure remains safe if the fat remains in the subcutaneous layer.

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