When you think of hush-hush topics, “down there” probably qualifies as one. Because of this, it is not common knowledge that there is actually a plastic surgery procedure specially designed to improve the look of the labia for cosmetic and/or functional purpose. Labiaplasty holds one of the highest patient satisfaction rates for cosmetic procedures with more than 95% of women very happy with their result.
What is a Labiaplasty?
Labiaplasty is a general term used to describe plastic surgery of a woman’s genitals. This usually involves a reduction of either the labia minora, labia majora, or both. This procedure can be performed for cosmetic reasons to improve the appearance of the labia or for medical reasons. Common medical reasons are to correct damage or stretching of the labia that occurred during childbirth or to eliminate discomfort or pain experienced from clothing, physical activity or intercourse as a result of a large or elongated labia.
If you want to have plastic surgery of the labia, you can have a labiaplasty in Princeton by Dr. Adam Hamawy. He received his credentials from some of the nation’s finest medical centers. He is certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery and the American Board of Surgery. Before you decide to have a labiaplasty, think carefully about your expectations and make sure you discuss them with Dr. Hamawy. He will do everything in he can to deliver on your aesthetic desires. Feel free to schedule your consultation today to see how labiaplasty can improve your self esteem and quality of life.
Quick Labiaplasty Facts
- LENGTH: 1-2 hours
- ANESTHESIA: Local or General
- IN/OUTPATIENT: In Office or Outpatient Surgical Center
- RECOVERY: Return to work in 2-3 days, light exercise in 2 weeks, full activity and intercourse in 6 weeks
Reasons to Get a Labiaplasty
No woman technically “needs” labiaplasty surgery, but we recommend treating what concerns or bothers you. Labia hypertrophy, or an enlarged labia, can be a source of physical annoyance and embarrassment. Wearing tight pants or bathing suits when you have labia hypertrophy can create painful pinching, friction or irritation, but not only that, visibility can be a great cause of concern and emotional distress. A labiaplasty with Dr. Adam Hamawy can be used to address cosmetic concerns, discomfort, intimacy concerns, or a combination of the aforementioned. The vaginal region will be made to look aesthetically pleasing, restoring both comfort and self-esteem.
Am I a Candidate?
Labiaplasty is often performed on women who experience discomfort physically and/or emotionally because of their labia. Candidates for a labiaplasty include women who:
- Have labia hypertrophy, or an elongated and enlarged labia minora or majora
- Have an asymmetrical labia minora
- Wish to reduce the size of the excess tissue around the clitoris
- Experienced tearing during childbirth
- Experience pain wearing certain pants
- Experience pain during intercourse
- Experience decreased stimulation
- Have hygiene difficulties due to labia hypertrophy
No age limit restricts potential labiaplasty patients, but women seeking labiaplasty are typically between the ages of 20 and 45. Labiaplasty patients must be in good health and have realistic expectation of what labiaplasty surgery can accomplish. There is no “perfect” labia, but labiaplasty with Dr. Hamawy will improve the look and functionality of your labia. He will create a neat, clean labia that is aesthetically pleasing and fits to your individual contour.
During your first visit, Dr. Hamawy will examine you and consider factors such as the amount of labial tissue present, vulvar skin and fat, and overall symmetry. Be prepared to discuss your concerns and medical history such as allergies, prior surgeries and medications, and vitamins or other supplements that you currently take. It is important for you to provide complete information. If you are a smoker, you will be asked to stop smoking at least 3 weeks before your surgery.
Undergoing a labiaplasty is not a decision that should be made lightly, so the initial consultation is important to make certain that this is the right decision for you. You will learn about the procedure, its limitations and risks, and Dr. Hamawy will discuss your needs and concerns. He will explain which surgical techniques are most appropriate for you based on your examination and your goals. After your consultation, photographs will be taken for your medical records. Please feel free to ask any questions at this time.
Each labiaplasty patient is given individualized preparation instructions based on their customized technique created by Dr. Hamawy; however, all patients preparing for their labiaplasty procedure will need to:
- Not smoke for the 3 weeks leading to surgery.
- Not take herbal or anti-inflammatory meds three weeks leading to surgery.
- Pick up all medications prescribed by Dr. Hamawy before your surgery to have them readily available.
- Make sure someone is available to take you home from surgery if you plan on having any type of sedation.
- Please wax or the shave the area the day before your procedure.
A labiaplasty involves reducing the sizes of the outer or inner lips or both. To reduce the inner lips, or labia minora, there are two common techniques. In the first method, a wedge is resected from each side. The wedge is then closed bringing the upper part of the labia down, reducing the profile and leaving a very natural appearance. Once healed, the scar is hidden inside the labial folds and is almost imperceptible. This technique decreases the likelihood of painful scarring that sometimes can occur with the trim method that involves removing of the entire length of the projecting labia. The trim method may be more appropriate for a woman who wants a very small profile with very smooth edges on her inner lips.
The outer lips, also referred to as the vulva or labia majora, can be tightened nonsurgically with focused ultrasound or radiofrequency treatments. Excess vulva can also be reduced by making incisions inside the natural folds and removing the excess vulvar skin and tissue. The scar, once it’s healed, is also well hidden. Often, the clitoris can also be exposed to increase sexual stimulation by performing a clitoral hoodectomy (clitoral hood reduction) and removing the clitoral prepuce. In all cases, dissolvable sutures are used to close the tissue so they don’t have to be removed later.
The Day of Surgery
Before surgery, you will be given medicine to lessen the anxiety and pain. The surgery can be performed with sedation and numbing with local anesthesia or under general anesthesia, in which case you will be completely asleep.
Before the procedure, you will meet your anesthetist who will answer any questions you may have and help you decide which anesthesia is appropriate for you. The surgery usually takes 1 to 2 hours.
A labiaplasty is usually performed as an outpatient procedure at a certified ambulatory surgery center or at one of several affiliated hospitals. The procedure begins with the labia and/or clitoris being marked for the appropriate incision locations depending on the technique the patient is undergoing. The anesthesiologist will then make sure you are comfortably anesthetized, and Dr. Hamawy will excise the proper amount of labial tissue, making sure to leave enough for proper functionality while remaining neat in appearance. After surgery, you will awake in a recovery area where you will be monitored before being released to go home. Be sure to arrange for someone to drive you home and to help you the first couple days while at home.
Be assured that your relationship with Dr. Hamawy does not end after your surgery. If you have any concerns during your recovery, or have more questions at a later time, you can always contact the office.
Some irritation or pain is normal following surgery. In addition, a significant amount of swelling and some bruising is normal the first few days. When you are discharged, you will be given prescriptions for pain medication. Ice packs and anesthetic sprays may also be used for comfort and to help with swelling.
You can shower just 24 hours after the surgery with a non-irritating soap, but please be careful not to pull or rub the incision locations. Dr. Hamawy will provide you with a special syringe after your procedure that you can use to gently clean the vaginal area after voiding. Avoid pools, hot tubs, and baths until instructed otherwise.
Most patients return to work after a week; however, plan on having limited physical activity and restrictions against exercise for several weeks. Sexual intercourse should be avoided for six weeks, and during this time you should not place anything inside your vagina, such as a tampon. If you have your period during the first few weeks after surgery, a pad should be used instead.
Your follow-up visits will usually start a few days following your surgery for a checkup. During your postoperative visits, Dr. Hamawy will review activity limitations, incision care and concerns you may have. After this visit, you will return in approximately 2 weeks, 1 month, 3 months, 6 months and one year.
After your initial consultation, you will be quoted a price that will include the surgeon’s fee and any associated costs. The price of your labiaplasty surgery will vary depending on the extent of your case, and can be determined after a consultation examination. Financing options are available if requested.