Is this procedure growing in popularity?
Labiaplasty has become more acceptable over the past decade, and that’s because techniques have improved, more patients are requesting the procedure, and more plastic surgeons are getting trained and specializing in the procedure. All of these things combined have led to it becoming less hush, hush and more accepted because not only is it cosmetically appealing, it’s functionally appealing as well. However, when anything gains in popularity, there are always going to be unqualified individuals who want to increase their income. There are people who are very unqualified to do genital surgery but who do it anyway, and that’s what gives this cosmetic procedure a bad name. However, there are a lot of very well-qualified people who are trained to surgically address these issues who produce nice results and change the quality of life for a lot of women. Make sure you do your research and find an experienced, Board Certified Plastic Surgeon who has done many, many labiaplasties.
Why are women having this procedure?
There are a variety of reasons women seek out labiaplasty, but usually they are seeking it because they’re having local irritation of this area, problems with personal hygiene when going to the bathroom or during their menstrual cycle, interference with sex, and discomfort during cycling, sitting, or walking or wearing tight jeans or yoga pants. Or they just feel self-conscious about their appearance “down there.” Ideally the labia minora should be mostly hidden within the labia majora because the labia majora have a different quality to the skin and are designed to protect the inner labia minora. When the labia minora protrude outside of the labia majora, a part of the female anatomy is not protected, and it can be very irritating. Therefore, one of the main benefits is just an improvement in comfort.
How is a labiaplasty done?
It involves excising a wedge to make the labia smaller and more cosmetically appealing. The current techniques have less scarring and fewer post-surgical issues, such as itching, burning, and painful sex, which were more common with the older procedures. The newer techniques also preserve the natural border of the labia because the incision is down along the inner aspect of it, and the incision crosses and goes down the outer aspect of the midline of the labia minora making it practically invisible.
Are these benefits documented in the medical literature?
Many well-reputed studies have been completed on labiaplasty, and there also have been a lot of case reports and small series, not just in the plastic surgery literature but in the obstetrics and gynecology literature. This is a well-documented procedure and according to surveys, labiaplasty patients are some of the happiest patients because it’s a relatively straightforward and short procedure that’s done on an outpatient basis. And within about an hour it can be life-changing, especially for many women who did not think anything could be done for them.
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