Aesthetic surgery of the buttocks encompasses many forms. Patients may seek to enhance buttock shape with buttock implants, autologous fat transfer, autologous tissue flaps, excisional procedures, or liposuction. Patients with traumatic buttock injuries and contour deformities from injections also require reconstruction, often with fat injections, autologous tissue flaps, and alloplastic implants. The dramatic increase in body contouring after massive loss associated with bariatric surgical treatments for obesity has also extended to buttock contouring. Skeletal and weight loss–associated gluteal deformities are often severe in nature and have also increased interest in these procedures.
The function of the buttock musculature in stability and gait is an important consideration and often has an impact on the procedure chosen for correction in reconstructive procedures. Its impact on aesthetic procedures is less clinically relevant. The history, definition, frequency, etiology, pathophysiology, clinical presentation, aesthetics, classification, and surgical treatment options are discussed in this article.
Body contouring of the buttock increased dramatically from 1997 to the present. Gluteal augmentation has increased 10% in the last few year, but statistics have only recently been collected. Buttock lifts have increased 142%, and body lifts have increase 459% over this same period. The refinement of liposuction, autologous fat transfer, autologous flaps, excisional procedures, and alloplastic implants has contributed to the increase in the number of successful treatments. Liposuction and its progeny of ultrasonic-assisted and superficial liposuction have also had an impact. Codification of gluteal aesthetic standards has added the finesse necessary to achieve the balance between form and function.
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