Labiaplasty is a cosmetic surgery procedure to enhance the appearance of the labia minora. The labia minora, or inner vaginal lips, are the folds of tissue surrounding the vaginal opening. Labia come in all sizes, shapes, and colors and are important in protecting the vaginal opening. However, the length, shape, or color of the labia minor can often affect a woman’s confidence and sometimes comfort. Women often choose to have a labiaplasty procedure when they feel the labia minora are too long, extending beyond the labia majora, or outer lips. The procedure can also improve the symmetry of the labia minora and enhance the confidence of the patient.
There are many reasons why a woman might decide to undergo a labiaplasty procedure including experiencing:
- Self-consciousness involving the length, symmetry, or border color of the labia minora
- Discomfort during activities such as sexual intercourse or riding a bike
- Chaffing or irritation when wearing tight clothing
Candidates for a labiaplasty are those who are concerned about the size or shape of the labia minora or wish to remove darker coloring from the border of the labia. Both young and older women can find emotional and physical relief with a labiaplasty procedure. To be a successful candidate, patients must have realistic expectations for their procedure and be in good physical health in order to successfully recover. The labiaplasty procedure only addresses the inner vaginal lips. Patients who are concerned with the appearance of the labia majora, clitoral hood, or vaginal opening should consult with Dr. Shaddix about other techniques.
There are a few different techniques that Dr. Shaddix uses during the labiaplasty procedure. The technique that’s best for you will be determined during your consultation based on your concerns, anatomy, and personal preference.
The trim technique is the most commonly used labiaplasty technique that involves following the edge of the labia along the natural border. Women often choose this technique when they are unhappy with the appearance of darker edges of the labia that they would like removed.
With a wedge technique, a triangle-shaped section is taken from the labia and the two new edges are brought back together and sutured to form a shorter, more symmetrical appearance. This technique can effectively reduce the size of the labia, but will not address a darkening along the edge of the labia.
The labiaplasty procedure is performed under local or general anesthesia for your comfort. The appropriate technique is then used as discussed during your initial consultation. Dr. Shaddix uses absorbable sutures to eliminate the need for their removal post-treatment. Patients are able to return home the same day as their surgery.
After a labiaplasty procedure, most patients return to light activity and their daily routine right away. Patients can expect some swelling of the labia and mild discomfort during the first week of recovery. It is not uncommon for one side of the labia to be more swollen than the other. To make your recovery more comfortable, an ice pack can be applied to the area, however, avoid direct contact with the skin. Patients should also wear loose clothing to avoid irritation and avoid tampon use during recovery. More strenuous activity and exercise should be avoided for two weeks and sexual intercourse should be avoided for at least six weeks. If you have questions about what you should or shouldn’t do during your recovery, always consult with Dr. Shaddix first.
The results of a labiaplasty procedure can be life changing, leading to improved feminine wellness and confidence. After the procedure, patients report increased comfort during sexual activity, exercise, and wearing tighter clothing. Patients are often more confident in their appearance.
The results of a labiaplasty procedure are permanent, leaving the patient with long-lasting results. changes to the labia minora or the internal vagina can happen with childbirth or age. For more feminine rejuvenation options, patients might choose a treatment like nonsurgical vaginal rejuvenation to tighten the vaginal walls and pelvic floor.
A surgical procedure like labiaplasty should only be performed by an experienced, board-certified surgeon. Dr. Shaddix is a double board-certified plastic surgeon in the Pensacola area with extensive experience performing the labiaplasty procedure. Patients can trust Dr. Shaddix for comfortable, safe, and effective care throughout the entire procedure process. To learn more about the labiaplasty procedure or to schedule your complimentary consultation, contact us at 850-476-7100.
Most insurance plans will only cover procedures that are medically necessary. While labia minora that are too long can cause some physical discomfort, it is considered a cosmetic procedure and a personal decision that is not required; therefore, most insurance plans will not cover the procedure, however, check with your insurance to be sure. Dr. Shaddix will go over the cost of your procedure and your payment options during your initial labiaplasty consultation.
Most patients who receive a labiaplasty procedure are over the age of 18. However, teenage women can benefit from the procedure if they experience discomfort, chafing, and irritation due to long labia minora. If under the age of 18, patients will need permission from a parent or guardian before the procedure can be performed.
With the use of anesthesia, the actual labiaplasty procedure process is completely comfortable. During the first few days of recovery, patients should expect some mild discomfort that can be controlled with an over-the-counter pain medication and the use of an ice pack. Discomfort will continue to diminish during the first week of the recovery process. Because Dr. Shaddix uses absorbable sutures, patients will not have the discomfort of having their sutures taken out post-treatment.