For the second time in the last five years, the death of a Brazilian butt lift patient at a cosmetic surgery practice in Miami has led to the doctor being banned from performing such procedures.
According to the Miami Herald, Dr. John Sampson of Coral Gables’ Seduction Cosmetic Surgery had his seventh illegal surgery patient, and that patient died on June 16, 2021
Sampson’s punishment was handed down from the Florida Board of Medicine where he was fined $20,000; charged $5,626 for investigation and prosecution costs. He was also ordered to perform five hours of continuing medical education in medical records keeping; must present a one-hour lecture on liposuction and gluteal fat grafting (BBL surgeries are a form of each); and can’t be the Designated Physician at any office surgery center.
Instead of adhering to the rules, Sampson not only cut on numerous patients from April 2021 to June 2021, but he had seven surgeries on June 16, 2021. In June, the Florida Board of Medicine made an emergency ruling limiting doctors to three BBL surgeries per day and required they be done with an ultrasound machine.
The surgery, which grafts fat from the body – often the stomach or flanks – and re-deposits it in a person’s butt, has become so common over the past decade that a quick glance on Instagram and TikTok could trick you into thinking that most women were born with this shape–but that would be far from the truth. Over the past few years, the number of BBLs globally since 2015 has risen nearly 80 percent, according to a survey by the International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery. It is now the fastest-growing cosmetic procedure in the world.
Facial procedures and Botox saw an unexpected spike in demand during the COVID-19 pandemic, which the American Society of Plastic Surgeons dubbed the “Zoom boom” after more people spent time staring at themselves on video calls.
Many surgeons attribute the significant growth of butt augmentation procedures’ popularity to celebrity trends and social media. One TikTok video that shows butt augmentation patients crowding in an airport line has over 3.2 million views.
The origin of the BBL is in its name. It began in Brazil in the 60s, thanks to a pioneering surgeon named Ivo Pitanguy. Three decades on, it grew popular among Latinx and Black communities in the US – cultures that had long celebrated curvier figures, in contrast to the fashion industry’s dominant norms of thinness.
“As you know, Brazilians wear very small swimsuits,” Dr. Renato Saltz, a Brazilian-born plastic surgeon in Salt Lake City who occasionally visited Dr. Pitanguy at his clinic in Rio, said in an interview. “It’s very important where you hide the scars.”
Doctors from all over the world went to Rio to watch Dr. Pitanguy operate, and to train with him.
Over the years, tons of actresses and actors, politicians, royals, nobles and business executives were rumored to have traveled to Dr. Pitanguy’s clinic to have, as many of them would say, “a little work” done. But Dr. Pitanguy refused to confirm their identities to the press.
How to Spot a Bad BBL Doctor
Plastic surgery training is a grueling six years and involves performing hundreds of cosmetic procedures. Trainees learn not only how to create the best aesthetic outcomes, but also how to react when unexpected events transpire in the operating room. A plastic surgeon attains certification by the American Board of Plastic Surgery, which a cosmetic surgeon does not.
The American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) maintains a “surgeon finder”, which is a great way to