Labiaplasty, which is sometimes also spelled labioplasty is the cosmetic surgical procedure which addresses a woman’s external genitalia. The whole procedure aims to reduce the size and improve the appearance of the inner lips of the vagina or the labia minora. Normally, the appearance of a woman’s external genitalia resembles that of the midsection of a mussel. Many women are fine with such appearance because the external genitalia definitely look like that as one gets older.
But for some, especially those who have been disillusioned by pornographic material where the female subjects look like they have the genitals of a little girl decide to get labiaplasty to feel better about themselves. Others also call for the procedure to be done on them especially after they have given birth via transvaginal delivery and they would want to at least restore the normal appearance of their genitals. There are those who would want to get labiaplasty because they think that their vaginal lips look bigger than usual, for them, this feature can be very embarrassing. Of course, others think that their normal lips can interfere with comfort during sexual activity, that’s why they go for this procedure.
For the procedure, there are two ways in which to do labiaplasty, these are the Wedge and Trim procedures.
The Trim Procedure
For the Trim procedure, this is actually a very simple method in which the portion which is unwanted of the labia minora is surgically incised and cut. To secure the cut, dissolvable sutures are used which is absorbed by the body as healing progresses. This method is preferred by many doctors who want a ‘touch-and-go’ style of surgery, as they administer local anesthesia for the operation and the patient only have to stay for one night to recuperate until stable in their clinic. This method can be very painful after the effects of the anesthesia wears off, which is why cold packs are advised to be used alternately with warm compress to hasten circulation and promote speedy healing of the incision site. The discomfort can last for a few days up to a week after the procedure so you need to be careful and have lots of bed rest during your recovery. If you can’t stand a warm compresses, a good salt bath will also help to improve proper blood circulation as you recover from the operation.
The Wedge Procedure
Now for the Wedge method, a pie-shaped or wedge-shaped portion of the labia is surgically removed. It helps to make the lips look more natural after the procedure. There is more anesthesia needed for the procedure, and it takes a longer period of time compared to the trim type. There is a shorter time needed for patients who prefer the wedge method to go back to their normal daily routine compared to the trim method since it only takes out a small yet significant portion of the genitalia.
Doctors do advise their patients who undergo labiaplasty and other operations that they should try to cut back on smoking in order to speed up the healing process. You see, the nicotine in cigarettes and tobacco products constrict the blood vessels, thereby impeding with circulation to the rest of the body. You need all the blood supply that your body can give you as you recuperate so help yourself and good luck on your operation.
What are the risks associated with this procedure?
Plastic surgery, like any surgical procedure, carries inherent risks and potential complications.
Please read our Risks and Complications of Plastic Surgery page.