Urogynecology of Kansas City offers labiaplasty, also known as “labia reduction surgery” or simply “labia surgery” to help alleviate pain, itching, irritation, or self-consciousness caused by an extended labia minora (inner lips) which reaches past the labia majora (outer lips).
This procedure is performed by Dr. Patrick Nosti, who is double board certified and fellowship trained in Gynecology and Female Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive Surgery. He has over a decade of experience in female reconstructive surgery, which includes complex vaginal reconstructive surgery and smaller cosmetic procedures like labiaplasty. While some discourage discussing intimate issues, Dr. Nosti and the staff at Urogynecology of Kansas City, commonly talk about sensitive topics such as labiaplasty and understand the impact they can have on a women life. No embarrassment. No shame. We are here to help you feel better—in whatever capacity that may be for you.
Who Can Get a Labiaplasty?
Every woman’s body is completely different. The labia are no exception. Every woman has unique vaginal features of her clitoris, labia, and vagina. While most women are comfortable with their natural makeup, others may not be. When the labia hangs below the hair-bearing labia majora, some women find that this causes twisting and/or tugging, which can be uncomfortable or even extremely painful. They may also find it uncomfortable to wear a bathing suit and fear the risk of the labia falling out or otherwise being exposed in public. If you feel restricted from activities like biking, horseback riding, or even just feeling uncomfortable wearing yoga pants or leggings, we can help. Many women aren’t aware that there is a way to correct the labia in a way that will be more comfortable for them!
Candidates for labiaplasty should have realistic expectations for what the surgery can accomplish as well as an understanding of what must be done to ensure proper recovery. There are other requirements such as:
- You’re in good physical health.
- Your body is fully developed, and you’ve healed from childbirth.
- You have enlarged labia.
- You’re a non-smoker or willing to stop smoking before and after surgery.
- You’re not taking any medications that could complicate your procedure such as blood thinners, aspirin, and certain anti-inflammatory drugs, among others.
How Does a Labiaplasty Work?
Labiaplasty is an effective solution to correct elongated labia. This is a procedure by which a surgeon trims and removes extra tissue from the labia. There are two common methods (Edge Resection and Wedge Resection) to perform this procedure. The best procedure depends on each patient’s anatomy and goals. Multiple studies show that labiaplasty is associated with a satisfaction rate over 90 percent. During your consultation and intake, Dr. Nosti will have an in-depth discussion about the procedure and what to expect.
Does Labiaplasty Hurt? How Long Does it Take to Recover?
Labiaplasty is performed under general anesthesia and takes 1-2 hours. The extent of your surgery will rely on the size and thickness of the area. Dissolvable sutures are used for optimal healing and comfort during recovery.
It’s essential to follow all pre and post-operative instructions to make sure your procedure and the healing process goes as smoothly as possible. Dr. Nosti recommends one to two weeks off work. That includes no cleaning or errands. You’ll need to keep your activity level very low as walking will be slightly uncomfortable. Walking as long as you go slowly is okay. You should also refrain from sexual activity, bike riding, horseback riding, or other strenuous athletic activities for 5-6 weeks following the surgery in order to promote proper healing. You should keep the area clean to avoid infection after your labiaplasty, and avoid clothing or activities that irritate the surgical site.
After two weeks, your pain and swelling should improve, and you can resume light activity. Most patients return to work after two weeks, and the swelling will continue to go down. The minor scars from your procedure will fade over time, and you should see your full results within a few months.
What are the Benefits of Labiaplasty?
Labiaplasty can be performed for a variety of reasons, including cosmetic purposes or to reduce pain or embarrassment that larger labia may cause during athletics and/or intercourse. Contrary to popular belief, labia reduction will not enhance sexual pleasure in itself. However, many of our patients report it works wonders in restoring confidence in their sexuality!
The ultimate goal for our patients is that they no longer need to think about their labia. This is a welcome change for many who previously felt self-conscious or uncomfortable on a daily basis due to an extended labia. A lesser known benefit of labiaplasty is an improvement in hygiene! Because the labia minora is no longer exposed, the labia majora is better able to protect the skin from trauma and irritation.
What are the Risks of Labiaplasty?
General surgical risks include infection, bleeding, pain, nerve damage, and inadvertent injury. Labiaplasty may result in scarring, particularly in cases where blood thinners or nicotine are resumed too quickly.
You reduce your surgical risks by carefully following all of the pre and postoperative directions provided by our office. Risks can be further reduced by choosing a board-certified surgeon, like Dr. Nosti, who utilizes advanced techniques and performs all procedures in an accredited surgical facility.
Is Labiaplasty Cost Covered by Insurance?
No. Labiaplasty is considered cosmetic and elective. Despite the fact that problem labia can lead to medical issues and discomfort, insurance companies do not cover the cost of this surgery.