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Author Topic: Fillers and Surgeries in Argentina and Brazil...done it all!  (Read 9667 times)

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Offline philipba

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  • Posts: 12
Fillers and Surgeries in Argentina and Brazil...done it all!
« on: November 11, 2006, 02:18:52 PM »
 Hello to all!

Its been quite a while since I have posted anything because it turns out to be a lot of work when people want to come down here to South America (I now live in Buenos Aires as many of you know) to have treatments.

There are always so many questions and details to arrange...so I have taken a year off posting because I was very busy getting settled in to my new country, learning Spanish, and of course, continuing the rebuilding of my face and body! But I have had so many positive experiences in helping others from this group to reclaim their faces and bodies that here I am again to offer what help I can.

For those of you who are not familiar with me, POZ 20+ years and healthy and finally undetectable.  But wasting syndrome and lipodystrophy almost completely destroyed my appearance. Since 1998, I have literally had every type of cosmetic surgery known to man as well as trying all of the currently available fillers.

Initially I began in New York and Europe with the various temporary fillers.  Although these interventions were moderately successful, they were after all, "temporary".  So I had quite a synthetic monkey on my back ( a very expensive "habit").

With the advent of BioAlcamid, I was greatly encouraged.  I was among the first to travel to Italy to have the treatment in my face and buttocks as part of the original "clinical study" with the product's inventor.

Unfortunately, this did not turn out well and was a grave error for which I am still paying nearly 5 years later.  While my current surgeon in Buenos Aires who specializes in BioAlcamid for HIV+ lipodystrophy patients, still maintains that the product is good, the devil, as they say, is in the details!  In other words, in the wrong hands, this product can be poorly administered and cause permanent disfigurement, migration and even life-threatening complications from infections which can actually get inside of the encapsulation. More importantly, in spite of what you may have been told, BioAlcamid is only PARTIALLY removable.  If there are any problems, this can turn out to be a serious issue!

I have had experience with all of the above.  It is my hope that others may learn from my mistakes as well as my successes.

My surgeon here has treated several hundred patients in the last 5 years with the product with only one minor infection (successfully resolved) at the surface of the injection site. Incorrect technique, over-filling and improper aftercare can all cause serious problems. Fortunately Buenos Aires is a first world medical center.  In my opinion the health care delivery system here is far superior to that of the United States, even including NY and LA.  The private hospitals rival and outshine their northern equivalents like Mt Sanai and Columbia Presbyterian by (in my vast experience) a long-shot. The system is funded by the government and a small number of large private insurers (no HMO middle man here!) and so therefore is modern, efficient and features such unheard of benefits (for the U.S.) like private rooms in hospitals (standard procedure) and doctor house calls!

That's right, if you are ill in Buenos Aires (and have insurance) you call the doctor and he or she comes to your your home!  The locals are highly amused that I found this to be surprising.  They say, "why would you leave your house if you are sick?  Of course the doctor comes to you!"  The best part?  Because of the 2001 devaluation of the peso, all of this costs about 75% less than inferior services in the States.

In Brazil (where I have my dermatologist) the story is similar, although the savings is only about 50%, my doctor has such a personal commitment to the POZ community that he charges only a fraction of what he could.  He loves his work.  I can imagine why.  Many times I have seen the Americans whom I have taken to see him break down in tears at the sight of their new faces after only one 30 minute permanent correction with the PMMA formulation that he pioneered.

In my humble opinion, he is THE BEST doctor in the entire world for restoring wasted faces and bodies (particularly the buttocks).

He has been able to correct all of the damage done with the BioAlcamid in Italy, plus take about 15 years off my face.  Additionally, we have done extensive replacement of the missing sub-cutaneous tissue throughout ALL of my body....face, trunk, buttocks, arms and legs!

While this kind of extensive rebuilding might not be an option for everyone due to constraints of time and money, I have been transformed to my former self as well as correcting some things that are now even better than they were in my youth.  He is not only a scientific genius and a true aesthetic artist, but he is a wonderful person.  That makes the whole experience even better.  I just returned yesterday from another visit (its only a short flight from Buenos Aires to Rio) and as always, I was so sad to leave.

During this trip we did the lips with hyaluronic acid (his formulation is chemically identical to Restylane but much less expensive).  The results are wonderful and because of his famous "light touch", completely natural.  He and I both agree that the lips are one area where a permanent filler is not the best option!

The question I am most often asked, is : "how much does all of this cost?"  Of course, that is not easy to answer.  It all depends on how many areas you want treated and how much product will be required.  Both doctors (Argentina and Brazil) seem very adept however at estimating what will be needed by looking at photos which can be sent by email.

In my experience with my own case and about 25 other patients who have come down here from the States, is that PMMA treatments generally run between $500 and $1500 (for two sessions) depending on how much is done.  Generally, it takes two sessions, because he likes to spread out the process with the first application being followed by a few days to allow for swelling to go down, and then the second (and usually final session).  So normally five days is enough for the complete treatment.

Surgeries with my plastic surgeon in Buenos Aires, seems to run about $1300 - $3500 for a full face-lift.  For surgery its usually required to stay in Argentina for two weeks.

But like everything else, the hotels in both places are high-quality and very inexpensive.  I have made a great deal for a hotel RIGHT on Ipanema beach in Rio de Janeiro for only about $60 a night including full breakfast on the beach! It is incredibly beautiful and, clean and safe.  If you are with someone who knows their way around...safety need not be a concern. Accommodations in Buenos Aires can be found for even less.

The only major expense is the airfare which runs between $700 and $1200 depending on what deals you can find (but they CAN be found!)

Please get in touch if you have any questions.

I know how difficult these decisions are to make.  I would only suggest that you discuss all of your options with a "veteran" such as myself or many others in this group before making up your mind.

With those of us who have gone before as "guinea pigs" there is no reason that anybody should have to suffer bad doctors or bad products anymore.  Please learn from our successes as well as, and more importantly, our failures.

I am here in Buenos Aires most of the time.  I go to Rio 3 or four times a year if you worry about going alone...don't.  Its always better to do these things with someone to support you...and it can be more fun too!

In Rio...there have sometimes been whole gangs of us there at once...In can be very fun as well as comforting to know that you are with others who understand what you are going through.

I am also frequently in New York city and Washington D.C. if you happen to be in those ares and want to chat about options and experiences.

All the best!

Buenos Aires

Offline SirPrize

  • Member
  • Posts: 78
  • SirPrize!
Re: Fillers and Surgeries in Argentina and Brazil...done it all!
« Reply #1 on: November 11, 2006, 06:15:46 PM »
"A picture is worth a thousand words!"  Please post some before and afters.
Due to current economic conditions, the light at the end of the tunnel has been temporarily turned off!

Offline philipba

  • Member
  • Posts: 12
Re: Fillers and Surgeries in Argentina and Brazil...done it all!
« Reply #2 on: November 11, 2006, 07:44:17 PM »
I am happy to send photo links and referrals to anyone privately  :)

Offline GSOgymrat

  • Member
  • Posts: 5,122
  • HIV+ since 1993. Relentlessly gay.
Re: Fillers and Surgeries in Argentina and Brazil...done it all!
« Reply #3 on: November 11, 2006, 08:27:33 PM »
Who are your doctors?

Offline philipba

  • Member
  • Posts: 12
Re: Fillers and Surgeries in Argentina and Brazil...done it all!
« Reply #4 on: November 11, 2006, 09:50:51 PM »
I have a plastic surgeon in Buenos Aires and a Dermatologist in Rio de Janeiro

But I can also recommend a very good Hair Transplant Center (80% less cost than the states) and an excellent team of dentists.

My partner and I have a medical referral service, but because I am POZ myself, we have decided to create for a separate entity as a not for profit organization here in Argentina.  I have already been doing this informally for many years.

All of our services ( coordinating with the doctors, helping with trip planning and accommodations, and accompanying the patients to all appointments before, during and after any procedures in order to provide support, advice, and if necessary translation ) are offered to HIV+ patients at no charge.

This is NOT a commercial enterprise.  Again, there are no fees for our services for HIV+ patients.

« Last Edit: November 12, 2006, 12:11:13 AM by philipba »

Offline philipba

  • Member
  • Posts: 12
Re: Fillers and Surgeries in Argentina and Brazil...done it all!
« Reply #5 on: November 17, 2006, 08:22:02 AM »
Hello again!

Thanks to everybody for the wonderful messages you have sent me.  I really appreciate it!

I am concerned about the myriad of doctors who have "jumped" on the PMMA bandwagon.   In one way, this is good because I believe the product is THE solution to lipoatrophy.

HOWEVER, there are two major problems:

1. There are now various formulations available which all carry the PMMA.  Some of these are good, and some unknown.  The addition of bovine collagen accomplishes one major objective:  TO RAISE THE PRICE of the product and enrich those who are marketing it.  The collagen is ultimately completely absorbed by the body and therefore is unnecessary.

2. I feel compelled to point out that doctors in places such as the U.S. and Mexico, who are raking in obscene profits using this product are a blackeye to the medical establishment. Extreme Profiteering through the suffering of others is reprehensible.

Please consider all of your options before having treatment.

I would suggest going to see the PMMA "pioneer" in Brazil.  I don't know of another doctor who is not only the MOST skilled, but also, due to his personal commitment to the HIV community is providing treatment for a little more than his own costs.

In the same spirit, my partner and I have started our non-profit foundation and free service to assist HIV positive patients to find the best solutions without being taken advantage of.

Please feel free to contact me with questions.  That is what we do.

email :   p461nyc@hotmail.com



Offline ryeguy

  • Member
  • Posts: 175
Re: Fillers and Surgeries in Argentina and Brazil...done it all!
« Reply #6 on: January 30, 2007, 03:13:11 PM »

I know this topic is old but I have a lot of questions about this as I am considering having work on my legs and butt here in Berlin. I would be happy to get a Private message from you on this subject. I am at the moment doing research as to what is possible here in Berlin but I am afraid that there in not a whole lot of docs with experience in this field.

Offline panda

  • Member
  • Posts: 224
Re: Fillers and Surgeries in Argentina and Brazil...done it all!
« Reply #7 on: March 24, 2007, 02:28:52 AM »
Hi Philipba, I have also sent you a mail asked for some photos and more info.. what mostly surprised me is that you wrote u did some work on leggs and arms? how could it be ? is it possible to inject pmma or some other fillers to the leggs as well ?

Offline panda

  • Member
  • Posts: 224
Re: Fillers and Surgeries in Argentina and Brazil...done it all!
« Reply #8 on: May 15, 2007, 12:18:59 PM »


Offline blondbeauty

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,787
Re: Fillers and Surgeries in Argentina and Brazil...done it all!
« Reply #9 on: May 15, 2007, 02:50:32 PM »
Demonstration Video of lipoatropy procedure.
The only member in these forums approved by WINBA: World International Nail and Beauty Association.
Epstein Barr +; CMV +; Toxoplasmosis +; HIV-1 +.
Counts when starting treatment:
V.L.:80.200 copies. CD4: 25%=503
Started Sustiva-Truvada 14/August/2006
Last V.L.count (Oct 2013): Undetectable
Last CD4 count (OCT 2013): 52%= 933

Offline starrlin

  • New Member
  • Posts: 1
Hi,Philip this is your Flight Attendent from the USA,I was wondersing when are going to be in Newyork? and if you are not going to be in New york no time soon,within the next 60days,i would like to travel to Buenos Aires,for PMMA in the buttocks,I sent the doctor the photos and he never responded.please feel free to email me back thanks.


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