A plastic surgery procedure that has come into increasing popularity over the course of the past few years is labiaplasty. In 2013, more than 5,000 labiaplasty and vaginal rejuvenation procedures were performed in the United States and that number has continued to rise dramatically each year since.
From models seeking to look better in the clothes, they are paid to wear, to regular women seeking to look and feel better in the current tight-fitting workout gear, women across the country and around the world are looking toward labiaplasty and vaginal rejuvenation procedures.
Women also request these surgeries to correct labia-related issues that are interfering with their ability to perform sexually, to perform daily tasks such as exercise, or are merely causing discomfort.
At our office, we have a good idea of how popular these surgeries are. Labiaplasties are among our most sought after procedures.
Here is a little more information about this area of surgery and what it involves:
A labiaplasty operation changes the shape or size of the labia minora (inner lips of the vagina) and/or labia majora (outer lips of the vagina), either correcting an asymmetry between them or reducing them in size. Occasionally, the labia majora, or outer labia, are enlarged. Some women are born with enlarged or misshapen labia minora, while others see this part of their anatomy change due to aging or childbirth.
Due to discomfort or cosmetic concerns, women with enlarged labia may have difficulty with the following situations or activities:
- Exercise and sports
- Wearing tight-fitting clothing such as yoga pants, leotards or swimsuits
- Sexual intercourse
Even the simple act of sitting can become a problem for a woman with overly big labia minora or labia majora.
Labiaplasty can be performed as its own procedure or as part of a full vaginal rejuvenation.
Before the day of your labiaplasty, you will have had at least one consultation with the plastic surgeon. He will have answered all your questions and concerns and you will know precisely what will be involved in the procedure, how long it will take and how soon after you will be able to go home.
A labiaplasty is usually performed in an outpatient setting under general anesthesia, sedation anesthesia or even simple local anesthesia (numbing medicine). Most surgeons prefer IV sedation, or what is commonly known as “twilight sleep” because it makes postoperative recovery immediate and usually results in few of the side-effects of general anesthesia. Dr. Parham Ganchi performs the vast majority of his labiaplasty procedures with a special numbing technique that doesn’t require general anesthesia or sedation. The patient is awake but has no pain. This avoids all the side-effects of general anesthesia and sedation. Having a fully certified operating room means that Dr. Ganchi can also provide his patients with the option for sedation if they prefer.
For a labiaplasty, the desired labial contours are outlined with a surgical marker. This is arguably the most important part of the procedure. The markings determine the final outcome. An experienced top plastic surgeon can create markings that will result in a beautiful and completely natural result. The excess tissue is removed and the skin is closed with stitches. Dr. Ganchi uses dissolving stitches so they are more comfortable and don’t have to be removed later.
Some things to know about a labiaplasty:
- A labiaplasty takes less than two hours to perform and the results are permanent. Dr. Ganchi typically takes about one hour for this procedure
- A woman can usually return to normal daily activity within days of a labiaplasty. She must protect the healing skin from pressure for about 4 weeks. More vigorous physical activity can start at around 6 weeks or when cleared by the surgeon
- Depending on a number of factors including age and extent of surgery, normal sexual relations can usually be resumed in 6 to 8 weeks
Vaginoplasty is plastic surgery of the vagina. This procedure is often referred to as vaginal rejuvenation.
Sometimes the term vaginal rejuvenation is used to describe a combination of vaginoplasty (“tightening” of the vagina) and/or labiaplasty (reshaping of the outer and inner lips of the vagina). It has become an increasingly popular option for women as part of a “Mommy Makeover” or those who want the reshaping due to weight loss, age, discomfort, or simple cosmetic desire.
Vaginal Rejuvenation Procedure
A vaginoplasty is a plastic surgery procedure addressing both the vaginal canal and the tissues of its mucous membrane. The surgery tightens and strengthens those muscles and tissues while removing excess or damaged lining from the canal. The procedure is specifically designed to strengthen and enhance the function of the vaginal structures.
A vaginal rejuvenation procedure can be performed on an elective basis, or as a medical necessity, in which case it would be covered by most insurances.
The procedure is done under general anesthesia or local anesthetic and IV sedation and takes from one to two hours.
Risks from Vaginal Rejuvenation and Labiaplasty
Vaginal rejuvenation and labiaplasty are safe procedures with low risk. To put the risk in perspective, pregnancy is associated with far more risk than any of these procedures.
Recovery from Vaginal Rejuvenation and Labiaplasty
With current anesthetic techniques, a patient can be pain-free for the first 18 to 24 hours. After this, any mild to moderate discomfort can be controlled with cold packs and analgesics.
Any scarring from these procedures will more than likely not be visible. With a vaginoplasty, incisions are hidden inside the vaginal area. With labiaplasty, the minimal scarring that occurs will disappear entirely after a period of time. Incisions will be kept as minimal as possible and most will be hidden in the natural lines and creases of your skin.
A woman can usually return to normal daily activity within days of a vaginal rejuvenation. The area should be protected from pressure for 4 weeks and vigorous activity should be avoided for at least 6 weeks or when cleared by the surgeon.
Depending on a number of factors including age and extent of surgery, normal sexual relations can usually be resumed in 6 to 8 weeks.
The single most important decision for a woman planning to have labiaplasty or vaginal rejuvenation is to ensure she chooses a doctor who is a highly trained, board-certified, experienced plastic surgeon. She must go to someone who is eminently qualified and will get it right the first time.
Labiaplasty and Vaginal Rejuvenation Consultation
If you are considering a labiaplasty, schedule a consultation with Dr. Ganchi. He will be happy to go over your options and recommend the procedures that are right for you.