Wednesday, July 30, 2008


Updated 3/2017-- photos/video and all links removed as many are no longer active and it was easier than checking each one.

I learned a new word recently.
adjective: Having well-shaped buttocks.
From Greek calli- (beautiful) + pyge (buttocks). Two related words are dasypygal and steatopygia.
"And it hasn't been lost on modern film directors that a nice set of tights can showcase the callipygian assets of a well-formed leading man."
Heroes in Hosiery; South China Morning Post (Hong Kong); Jul 20, 2006
I am being asked by more and more patients about buttock shaping, lifting, and even implants. The entire idea of defining a nice buttock is interesting to me. Difficult to put into words, but something "you know when you see" one. And yes, I do check out men's butts. The girls in the OR and I have been know to whisper about how nice Dr ___'s butt looks in his scrubs.
Okay, back to the topic. What defines a well-shaped buttock?
The features that are common to attractive youthful, female buttocks in all ethnic groups include:
  • A smooth inward sweep of the lumbosacral area and waist.
  • A very feminine cleavage as the buttocks separate superiorly and inferiorly.
  • Maximum prominence in the mid to upper buttocks.
  • There should be minimal infragluteal crease, with no droop above this line.
Sacral dimples or depressions may be present or absent in attractive youthful buttocks, but are not considered a determinant of their beauty.
Even with the difference in cultural ideas of the "ideal" buttock, the above features hold. Some ethnic differences include (some good photos can be found here):
Caucasian patients
  • will generally want buttocks that are full but not really large.
  • fullness of the lateral thigh is considered objectionable.
  • Some prefer a full rounded lateral buttocks.
  • Others prefer a flat or hollow lateral buttock (considered a more "trim" or athletic look).
Hispanic or of recent Hispanic descent
  • prefer buttocks that are very full.
  • lateral buttocks that are very full
  • a slight fullness in the lateral thigh.
Asian patients
  • prefer buttocks that are shapely but small to moderate in size
  • little or no fullness in the lateral buttocks or lateral thigh.
African-Americans and Caribbean's of African descent
  • have a strong and consistent cultural ideal of very large buttocks
  • often will request a "shelf" (extreme prominence of the upper buttocks)
  • prefer very full lateral buttocks
  • a very full, prominent trochanteric area of the lateral thighs is considered attractive by both men and women in this culture
There are multiple procedures that can be used to get to or closer to the "ideal" (must in keep in mind the patient's ideal) buttock. These include:
Micro-fat grafting
Buttock Reduction/Contouring
Gluteal Implants
Buttock Lifts
Combination of the Above
And don't forget these exercises that help tone and bulk up the glutes. You can find them here or a video here or this youtube video (the one below) or this one,

Dr Thomas L Roberts, III, MD, FACS Website: (nice photos and patient information)
Body Contouring, Buttocks Surgery; eMedicine Article, Dec 19, 2006; Robert F Centeno MD and Neal R Reisman MD, JD
Body Contouring, Flankoplasty, and Thigh Lift; eMedicine Article, Feb 25, 2008; Keith M Robertson MD and Bruce G Freeman MD
Beautiful Buttocks: Characteristics and Surgical Techniques. Clin Plast Surg, July 2006;33(3):321-32; Cuenca-Guerra R, Lugo-Beltran I (abstract available here)
Buttocks Lifting: How and When to Use Medial, Lateral, Lower, and Upper Lifting Techniques; Clin Plast Surg. July 2006;33(3):467-78; Gonzalez R. (abstract available here)
Gluteoplasty; Aesthetic Surgery Journal, Vol 23, No 6, pp 441-455; Constantio G Mendieta MD (abstract available here)
Gluteal Aesthetic Unit Classification: A tool to Improve Outcomes in Body Contouring; Aesthetic Surgery Journal, Vol 26, No 2, pp 200-208; Robert F. Centeno MD (abstract available here)
Gluteal Reshaping; Aesthetic Surgery Journal, Vol 27, No 6, pp 641-655; Constantino G Mendieta MD (abstract available here)


mark's tails said...

Ramona, only you could take a bar room topic like this and turn it into a didactic session complete with descriptive phrasing and a bibliography, butt I digress, ass I was saying I commend you on your ability to do this ;)

Vijay said...

I agree with everything that Mark says. I admire your ability to make an academic medical post Not Safe For Work for a doctor!!

Anonymous said...

The differing cultural perceptions are so interesting..wonder where they come from.

rlbates said...

Purplesque, not sure where they come from, but you have to be careful of the same with eyelid and nose surgery.

DrB said...

You forgot to mention Brasilians, who (please correct me if I am wrong) really brought buttock implants into the mainstream. And, of course, it doesn't hurt to have a pair of shapely legs to set that behind on top of... Very nice post. (I especially like that 'exercise' is one of the key words!)

rlbates said...

Dr B, you are correct in that the Brazilians brought most of this to the forefront. They are considered part of the Hispanic/Latin population.

Anonymous said...

Photoshop is cheaper than plastic surgery so that must be the procedure used on that model.

Anonymous said...

I came here directed by Dr. Val's blog, which, with tongue firmly in cheek wished its readers to visit your blog to learn about dimples on one's buttocks. I am not disappointed.

Chrysalis said...

Ramona, Ramona, that is some educational info. ;)

Anonymous said...

"You give me a topic, and I will tell you how that topic is really about medicine..."

(Nod to "My Big Fat Greek Wedding" - I wonder what bottoms Greeks like?)

Anonymous said...

Wow. This reads like a primer for understanding interracial relationships. White girl with large buttocks & very full prominent trochanteric lateral thighs (all natural!) dating black. thanks

Unknown said...

just learned this word today. i have been trying to say this word in many ways for a long time.