Women who have gluteoplasty with autologous fat are happy with the results, according to a new study being presented at the annual scientific meeting of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons in San Diego.

At least one buttock augmentation surgeon notes that while fat grafting to the buttocks—also known as a Brazilian Butt Lift—is a great operation, some patients may actually need implants to achieve their desired results.

In the new study of 58 women who had buttock augmentation, the surgical team evaluated preoperative and postoperative photos to rate their level of satisfaction with the procedure, using a scale of 1 to 4, with 4 being excellent improvement. Fifty-seven patients (98%) reported being “very satisfied” with their results. No major complications were reported. To prevent fat necrosis, researchers avoided grafting large volumes of fat in any one particular area.

Four months after surgery, one patient complained of volume resorption, received additional fat grafting, and subsequently reported being satisfied with her outcome.

San Diego-based plastic surgeon M. Mark Mofid, MD, FACS, says that fat grafting to the buttocks is always the first choice for butt augmentation and it is something he offers to many of his liposuction patients as an adjunct procedure. Still, he adds that many women don’t have enough fat and some are looking for a more dramatic effect than is possible with fat grafting.

“Fat grafting has far fewer complications and risks than gluteal implants,” he says. “Many patients don’t have adequate fat, or they have expectations that can’t be met by fat grafting,” he says. “If you want to turn heads in clothing, that is not fat grafting—that is implants.

Mofid presented study findings at the meeting which serve to debunk some of the myths surrounding gluteal implants—namely, the high complication rate. While there are risks associated with the surgery, the overall complication rate is not as high as many people believe and advances in technique and implant options are helping to lower the rate event further. He helped develop Implantech’s ContourFlex™ Gluteal Implants, but receives no royalties.