Buttock augmentation can be done either with implants or a patient’s own fat. I personally don’t do augmentation with implants but prefer to use a patient’s own fatty tissue. This procedure is one of the fastest growing procedures in our country and globally. Concerns have arisen due to an alarming rate of fatalities associated with this procedure. The rate of mortality has been estimated to be 1 in 2000 – 1 in 6000. As a result of this a multilevel task force has been formed to study this and come up with a solution to address this. For example the mortality rate in tummy tucks or abdominoplasty was 1 in 13,000. I have read several articles about this and I think the key factor or one of the factors is into which plant or space you inject the fat. I always inject superficial or ABOVE the muscle. This way I can avoid the big vessels in the gluteus muscle. It seems when surgeons inject INTO the muscle they may inadvertently inject fat into these vessels causing fat emboli to the lungs. Nearly 200,000 fat grafts to the buttock area have been reported and there have been 32 fatalities and 103 non-fatal fat emboli. It will be awhile before this study is completed but I think it echoes once again how important it is to choose a board certified plastic surgeon who has some experience and expertise in this. I always tell my patients that experience comes from going to the OR every day.
It is even so important to be a prudent and wise consumer and not make choices just based on dollars and cents or office location. We’ll keep you posted.