A TikTok video of an airplane full of what seemingly appears to be Brazilian Butt Lift patients has gone viral with over 11 million views. It’s not clear where they were flying to, but the flight was leaving Miami, Florida. It’s not uncommon for patients to travel to another state or out of the country to have a cosmetic procedure done, especially if you wish to work specifically with a particular surgeon.
However, when it comes to a Brazilian Butt Lift procedure, there are specific recovery requirements to consider before heading on a plane to travel home. Plus, you should be aware of the possible health risks of traveling after surgery of any kind.
We break down what to expect after a Brazilian Butt Lift procedure and when it is safe to travel by air after having surgery.
So, let’s start with the cosmetic procedure first. What is a Brazilian Butt Lift?
Brazilian Butt Lift (BBL) involves two cosmetic procedures; liposuction from another part of the body with pockets of fatty tissue and fat grafting, taking the liquified fat from the liposuction and injecting them into the buttocks.
The liposuction removes stubborn body fat that is diet and exercise-resistant from areas where the patient wishes to make it slimmer or sculpted, such as the abdomen, thighs, or underarm areas. The unwanted fat is processed, liquified, and injected into the buttocks- adding more volume and shape. Performing two body enhancing procedures within one surgery makes the BBL one of the most popular butt augmentation procedures.
A Brazilian butt lift is considered an invasive cosmetic surgical procedure performed under anesthesia. However, procedures transferring a small volume of fat may be done with local anesthesia, meaning the patient will be awake.
A Basic Breakdown of the Brazilian Butt Lift Procedure:
Immediately after the procedure, the patient will have some bruising and swelling from the liposuction and around the injection sites. Every patient recovers differently from surgery, but patients typically walk a day or two after the procedure. Pain medication can be prescribed if needed.
The key to a successful Brazilian butt lift surgery is not sitting directly on your buttocks for at least 2-4 weeks after the procedure. Patients are advised to sleep on their stomach or sides to improve their chances of a higher fat transfer success rate. However, even after the initial 2-4 weeks of not sitting directly on your butt, it is recommended to use a donut pillow or inflatable pillow for sitting for an additional four weeks of the recovery.
It should be noted that up to 40\\% of the transferred fat cells may not survive, regardless of whether a patient sits directly on the buttocks. Fat cells not surviving after the transfer are completely normal and should be expected, meaning the fullness of your butt will naturally decrease after the surgery.
The final results will take 10-12 weeks after the swelling subsides and the surviving fat cells have solidified into newly transplanted areas.
If you are traveling for surgery, you should stay in the surgery city for 5-7 days after your procedure. This is because flying after surgery can put you at risk of blood-clotting complications such as deep vein thrombosis (DVT).
DVT is a blood clot from stagnant blood flow, and the clotting can damage vein walls. This type of blood clotting is commonly found in the legs, causing pain, and swelling. The trauma to the body after having surgery and not being as active can increase the risk of blood clots during air travel.
If you must travel by air for your cosmetic surgery, make sure to take several walking breaks during your flight to help the blood flow throughout your body and stay hydrated to decrease your chances of clotting. But remember, you can’t sit down after having a BBL procedure, so it’s critical to consider the flight time and the stamina it will take to withstand the entire flight without much rest.
It’s OK to travel by air after having cosmetic surgery but only after 5-7 days after the procedure. You must give your body time to recover and get the blood flowing normally before heading on a plane. Doing so could help avoid the possibility of blood clots. Your board-certified plastic surgeon should have standard protocols for air travel post-surgery—make sure to consult with them first.
And more specifically, when it comes to traveling after a BBL procedure, you should consider the length of time and how you will not be able to sit down properly in your seat. You will most likely be resting on your knees, which means facing the person sitting directly behind you.
All these details are necessary to consider when traveling by air after having a Brazilian Butt Lift procedure.
To find a board-certified cosmetic surgeon experienced in performing a Brazilian Butt Lift in your area, use our “Find a Doctor” navigation tool.