*Whether you’ve received them, considering receiving them or getting ready to receive them butt injections are serious business.
Case in point: Apryl Michelle Brown, a Los Angeles cosmetologist who almost died after receiving butt injections. Brown recalled her ordeal and how she’s dealing with the aftermath in a 2012 story that ran in the November 2012 issue of Essence magazine.
Brown’s story began in 2004 when she says she paid an unlicensed person called a “pumper” to inject industrial-grade silicone into her buttocks. Brown’s decision to have the procedure done came amid years of insecurity from being teased by family and friends about having a “pancake” booty.
According to Essence, the reasons for receiving butt injections at “pumping parties” range from getting “an A-list physique” to attention given to celebrities with shapely bottoms to the bad economy. Despite them not being safe, there has been an increase in butt injections.
In Brown’s case, peer pressure can also play a role, as she admitted to her friends using silicone injections. Although she knew her pumper was not a doctor, Brown ended up using her for the procedure. The decision to use the pumper, a client of Brown’s, was solidified when the pumper showed off her new butt during a hair appointment.
“It was like bam, boom, pow,” Brown told Essence as she recalled how the woman’s new behind was just like the one she’d always wanted. “I was like, ‘Oh, my God, you do injections like that?'” Brown recalls. “She said, ‘Yeah.’ And I said, ‘How much do you charge?’ ”
While she doesn’t remember how much the woman charged, Brown does remember setting up the appointment a month after seeing the woman instead of going to a plastic surgeon. In her eyes, butt implants would be too expensive with a plastic surgeon.
“I couldn’t just blow 15 thousand, 30 thousand, 40 thousand on my ass,” says Brown. “[With the pumper], I felt like I was getting a deal.”
During her first procedure, Brown ultimately got injected several times in the crease between the butt and the thigh with what she assumed was silicone by the pumper, who told her massage the area regularly to settle the silicone. In addition, Brown was told wear cheek-exposing shapewear to help reduce any swelling.
By the time she went back for her second round of injections a month later, Brown didn’t see the results of the first procedure. To add to this, she experienced more pain with the second procedure and wound up not going back for her final two treatments after not seeing any improvement.
As time went on, things got worse for Brown as the area where she got injected became “intensely irritated and painful, and the skin blackened.” This, coupled with sleepless nights caused by fever and “nagging, aching pain,” caused Brown to called the pumper in 2008 to see about removing the silicone.
It was then that the pumper revealed that she was experiencing similar symptoms and that she was afraid to seek help out of a fear of getting arrested.
As it turned out, it was an infection that nearly killed Brown, who was rushed to the hospital and was “diagnosed with necrotizing soft tissue infection secondary to infected foreign material, meaning her tissue from her lower back down to her mid-thigh was dying from a barrage of bacteria from the silicone.”
“She was going into septic shock,” Brown’s daughter, Danye Wooden, said. “Her organs were shutting down; her heart and her lungs weren’t getting enough blood.”
For her part Brown insists that she isn’t angry with the pumper and will not press charges or sue. “I knew it was black market,” she says. “I knew she wasn’t a doctor. I knew she wasn’t a nurse. I knew all those things. So I was disappointed in myself, never angry with her. I’m still not.”
Things came to head with Brown as she had more than 20 operations and ultimately had her hands, feet and much of her buttocks amputated by doctors. Overall, Brown was left with only a one-inch-thick layer of skin and tissue remained of her butt.
Despite everything, Brown doesn’t harbor any ill will toward her pumper as she told Essence that she would not press charges or sue
“I knew it was black market,” she confessed to the publication. “I knew she wasn’t a doctor. I knew she wasn’t a nurse. I knew all those things. So I was disappointed in myself, never angry with her. I’m still not.”
Essence’s revisiting of Brown’s story comes amid the arrest of a Denise Rochelle Ross last week for illegally administering butt injections, which possibly left one woman dead. For more of Brown’s story on her experience with butt injections, click here.