Review of My Brazilian Butt Lift, Liposculpture and Mini Tummy Tuck in the Dominican Republic
Procedure specific satisfaction rating
"Brazilian butt lift"
I never thought I would undergo plastic surgery, but at 32, with no children, and feeling highly self-conscious about my excess abdominal fat and bra rolls, I figured it was time to put an end to that insecurity once and for all. Things as simple as being able to wear a bikini without a cover up for the first time in my life or being able to shop for certain form fitting outfits without coming out disappointed from the dressing room seemed impossible for me at the time. It is incredible how small insecurities can keep you from enjoying life to the fullest. You may even avoid certain activities or social events because you are not comfortable with the way that you look. Now, I always loved my body, but I knew I would love it even more if I didn’t have to invest so much energy into the insecurities brought on by my problem areas; which no amount of diet, weight loss and exercise had helped eliminate. I bravely decided it was time for a change, and aware of the elevated costs of cosmetic surgery in the United States, sought out to improve my physical appearance and boost my confidence in the hands of a wonderful plastic surgeon in the Dominican Republic. Now medical tourism for many is quite frightening and is a huge leap out of one’s comfort zone, but the pros definitely outweigh the cons when it comes to the accessibility, affordability and results! I noticed the results from women who had undergone plastic surgery in the Dominican Republic were truly spectacular and at only a fraction of the price of more developed countries. Now, it helped that both my parents are Dominican and that I speak the language. It wasn’t a difficult choice deciding upon Dr. Carlos Mojica de Leon, who operates from one of Santiago’s largest and most modern clinics, La Union Medica del Este, in the Dominican Republic. He is a board certified plastic surgeon and had amazing before and after photos. I contacted him, as is customary for many overseas surgeons, through WhatsApp and sent him my before pictures. He responded that although the final determination of what procedures would be the best for me would be decided after a personal consultation, that he would recommend liposculpture of my back, waist and abdomen, a mini tummy tuck for my belly fat and a fat transfer to my buttocks, also known as Brazilian Butt Lift surgery and all 3 procedures were performed at the same time. The cost of the procedure was about $3500 but I first I needed to have my blood work and EKG done at the clinic upon arrival, which was around $165. My results came back clear and I was in great health, so I scheduled the surgery date for that same week.
The surgery was scheduled for 7:00 am but I was to be there at 6:00 am and was instructed not to eat absolutely anything after 10 pm the night before because of the general anesthesia I would be placed under and the potential of being nauseous and vomiting. The surgery lasted 4 hours and I spent the night at the clinic, with a friend who spent the night there with me. I was taken care of very well. It really did not feel as if I was out of the United States at all, besides of course, everyone speaking Spanish. I was discharged the next day after my surgeon came to check on me and was handed my list of prescriptions I should take for the following 10 days. Among them were antibiotics, iron, anti-blood clotting injections, topical antibiotic for my tummy tuck wound and incisions and pain medication. I recovered at the Hodelpa Garden Court, a nice hotel which offers a wellness center for patients who have undergone cosmetic surgery. For the first 24 hours post op after being discharged, I would simply sleep and kept hydrated with coconut water, pineapple juice and ginger tea. The last two which significantly help with inflammation.
The pain and discomfort is worse during the first three days of the recovery process, but the pain medication allowed me to fall asleep which helped a lot. The mini tummy tuck, also known as mini abdominoplasty, was the least painful. The area was simply numb and the scar was surprisingly a short, faint line across my lower abdomen. Since it is a mini and not a full tummy tuck, I did not need my bellybutton reconstructed as my upper abdominal muscles were not in need of repair, only those below the bellybutton. The only discomfort was the drain that hands from the end of the tummy tuck scar which you must wear for a minimum of eight days. It was a pain carrying it to and from the bathroom and while showering, but it was a necessity as it helped the body eliminate excess tumescent liquid that was used during liposuction, as well as any liquefied fat that remained inside the body. Most women I have talked to have agreed that the tummy tuck itself was the least painful procedure they had. It is only a matter of avoiding putting any pressure on the abdomen and following the doctor’s instructions on how to lay in bed and stand until that wound is fully sealed.
The most painful part was the liposuction of my back, abdomen and waist. My flanks, bra rolls, and unnecessary back fat was gone. The swelling after liposuction is quite significant and can last for up to 6 months. However, I could see my results right away and I was pleasantly surprised. I could not believe I was looking at myself in the mirror. I had a flat tummy for the first time in my life. All this was truly gratifying and made the discomfort and pain of liposuction worth the sacrifice. The back liposuction is accompanied by soreness and pain and it makes it quite difficult to find a comfortable position to lay on, while you’re on your back. It was also very messy the first few days, as the incisions on my back were left open so the excess liquid in the body can exit them. I had to lay on bed pads since the leaking for the first two days was continuous. The post-operative lymphatic massages and pain medication were effective is reducing this discomfort as the days passed. It is important to start your massages as soon as the doctor says it is safe to do so. These will stimulate the lymphatic system into expelling the liquid your body retains after surgery and speeds up your recovery. In addition to the massages & pain meds, I had to wear a compression garment for about 2-3 months.
After the doctor removed the excess fat from the other areas, he then transferred that fat into my buttocks, also known as The Brazilian Butt Lift. This procedure was not painful. It simply felt as if I had been doing hundreds of squats in one day. It was a bit sore and I had to be very careful as I got into bed to lay on my three-piece wedge pillow bed, which maintained my back inclined and legs elevated. This bed was a lifesaver! It’s important to avoid sitting on your butt for the first few days, as the fat that was transferred there is still accommodating itself. You will lose a lot of the fat that is transferred to your buttocks, and the preliminary results tend to be a lot larger than the butt you end up with. Having the Brazilian Butt Lift was not even in my plans, but I was more than happy with what Dr. Carlos did, as he simply redistributed the fat in a way that gave a natural more proportionate look to my body. I never even thought of getting a Brazilian Butt Lift before he suggested that the procedure would provide me with a more hourglass frame that would truly complement my body. I do not regret following his advice! Neither does my husband!
Final results are not visible until at least 6 months after surgery, and can take up to a year in some patients. In my case, I could already see my fabulous new overall shape by the third of fourth month. Now I can wear that two-piece bathing suit with confidence and without needing to reach for my towel to cover myself up. With my new body, I can go to a clothing store and try on dresses and form fitting jumpsuits I would have never dared to try on before. It’s a big decision to undergo plastic surgery, and one that can make you quite anxious and hesitant, but after my experience I can honestly say it has been worth it. I had an amazing doctor and really good results, which has renewed my confidence and self-esteem, which you can't put a price on.
I've attached a video of my experience getting my mini tummy tuck, liposculpture and bbl procedure.