ME PLASTIC SURGERY
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What is a labiaplasty?
Labiaplasty is an aesthetic plastic surgery procedure of the labia minora or labia majora designed to improve the excessive tissue in the vulva (external female genitalia), either by reducing the size and/or improving asymmetries of the labia minora and clitoral hood, but also by bringing volume back to deflated tissues (usually to the labia majora and mons pubis) with fat or fillers injections. The proportion between labia minora and labia majora is also key to aesthetic improvement of the vulva. There is improvement of symptoms that many women have of pain, discomfort or chaffing due large or dangling labia minora (“inner lips”). Labiaplasty is one of the most rewarding cosmetic procedures Dr Miotto performs because it is so life changing. It has shown to improve women’s self-esteem and quality of life in several studies.
Who is a good candidate for labiaplasty?
Women who want to improve the aesthetic look of the vulva, who have functional concerns and want to improve chaffing, dangling or pinching of the labia minora, or want both the aesthetic and functional improvement. Labia majora reduction is indicated when there is laxity, loose skin or excess fat in the labia majora, causing the labia majora to hang down, become wrinkled and cause discomfort or unpleasing aesthetic look. Some women also complain of bulky labia majora (outer lips). The labia majora can be reduced by excising a wedge of tissue and hiding the scar along the natural groove in the natural crease.
Labiaplasty can be done under local anesthesia – we make the procedure extremely comfortable and relaxed to the patient.
How is the labiaplasty procedure performed?
The procedure is performed comfortably in the office under a combination of topical and local anesthesia. It is also done in the operating room under general anesthesia or deep sedation when we need to do fat grafting to labia majora, or we need to reduce the labia majora. When the procedure is done under local anesthesia, we make the procedure extremely comfortable and relaxed to the patient. The procedure usually takes 1h and the patient goes home after that. The excess tissue is removed from the inner lips and sometimes from the clitoral hood, and the incisions are placed in hidden locations to avoid visible scars. All stitches are absorbable in up to 2 weeks. Close follow-ups are scheduled to assure a proper healing.
What is the recovery/downtime after a labiaplasty?
After a labiaplasty there will be swelling and bruising for up to 2 weeks. Local discomfort is controlled with ice packs and oral medication. We recommend that the patients lay down often during the first week after the procedure and when possible keep the legs elevated do decrease swelling. Icing the area for 15min every hour during the day gives great relief of symptoms in the first week. We recommend restriction of intense physical activities for 2 weeks and restriction of vaginal intercourse, bike riding or horseback riding for 6 weeks after surgery.
Labiaplasty is a very delicate and intricate procedure that should be performed by plastic surgeons who are familiar with the local anatomy, anatomical variations from patient-to-patient and the use of different techniques. We provide patients with step-by-step information to properly understand their options, make informed decisions and have a great experience that is private, pleasant and personal.
It will be a great pleasure to see you for your consultation in our office to discuss your goals, plan the procedure and make the whole process very private and pleasant.
GABRIELE C. MIOTTO MD, MEd., is a Brazillian-American plastic surgeon specialized in aesthetic surgery and minimally invasive procedures.