To understand the increase in popularity of labiaplasty for big labia minora, an understanding of a few terms is essential.
Labia is a Latin word meaning “lips”. The labia majora are the outer “lips” or folds of skin on either side of the opening to the vagina. These are covered with hair in most adult women. The labia minora are the smaller hairless “lips”, or folds of tissue, just within the labia majora on either side of the opening to the vagina.
Labiaplasty (sometimes incorrectly termed labioplasty) is a plastic surgery procedure done to alter or reduce the size or shape of the labia.
Overgrowth, causing enlargement of the labia minora is known as labial hypertrophy (big labia). This condition can be present from birth or can result from childbearing, advancing age, and weight gain. Enlarged labia usually affects the labia minora but it can also affect the labia majora. The labia can be enlarged on one side or both sides and labiaplasty can be used to improve the size and shape of elongated or asymmetrical labia minora or labia majora.
For reasons of comfort, function or appearance, a woman might need or desire surgery to change their labia majora or labia minora. Frequently, this is due to having enlarged labia minora.
See Labiaplasty Before-After Photos
Why are more women who have big labia minora deciding to have labiaplasty?
Enlarged labia can cause problems with function, comfort, hygiene or appearance; sometimes all of these.
Women with enlarged labia minora may find themselves less likely to put on a swimsuit, wear running shorts or go to the gym. This is partly a matter of cosmetics and partly for reasons of discomfort. Enlarged labia can make it uncomfortable to wear certain types of pants or underwear. Overly big labia can interfere with activities such as sports and can make it uncomfortable to have sex. Even sitting can become a problem for a woman with big labia minora or labia majora.
A labiaplasty can be performed on its own or as part of a larger plastic surgery procedure, such as a “Mommy Makeover”.
When performed independently of any other surgery, a labiaplasty to reduce the size of or correct other problems concerning an enlarged labia minora is done on an out-patient basis and takes from one to two hours.
You’ll be able to return home shortly after your surgery is completed.
Typically you will have some swelling and soreness for the first few days after surgery. You may want to use cold compresses and over-the-counter pain relievers, as needed. In less than a week you should be able to return to work (depending, of course, on the type of job you have).
Results of Labiaplasty for Big Labia Minora
Most patients enjoy increased comfort during physical activity and feel a decrease in self-consciousness during sex. Underwear, pants, shorts and swimwear will all fit better and feel better after your labiaplasty.
Dr. Parham Ganchi, a Harvard trained, board certified top plastic surgeon has performed hundreds of labiaplasty procedures over a period of more than ten years. The most popular procedure involves reducing the size or bulk of big labia minora. At times, enlarged labia majora (outer lips) are also reduced. In some women, the labia majora are deflated or flat. Dr. Ganchi uses fat injection to restore shape and fullness to the outer labia in these women.
All of Dr. Ganchi’s labiaplasty procedures are performed in his private, state of the art surgical suite and can be performed under either local anesthesia or sedation anesthesia. All patients go home after their procedures.
Most physicians and surgeons are still unaware or unfamiliar with labiaplasty or the problem of big labia minora. This can be frustrating to many women looking for information relating to this very private condition. When selecting a labiaplasty surgeon, it is important to select a board-certified plastic surgeon with a great deal of experience with this procedure.