The woman’s sentiment about her most intimate body parts affects her confidence, how she connects with romantic partners, and her life experience. When large, irregular, redundant, or otherwise distinctive labia (outer female genitalia, in medical terminology, her “vulva.”) cause physical discomfort, self-awareness, or reluctance, the pleasure of femininity may be abridged. For those who are so inclined, Dr. Laverson’s labiaplasty procedure adjusts labia size and appearance for each woman’s personal situation and preferred appearance, promoting comfort and self-assurance.
Labiaplasty is a minor surgery for adjustment of size, shape, symmetry, and appearance of female labia. Most often, labiaplasty reduces inner folds of the vulva, the labia minora. Labiaplasty can also be performed on the outer, hair-bearing labia (the labia majora), labia majora-plasty. All labiaplasty procedures done by Dr. Laverson are designed and accomplished to enhance vulva-vaginal contours, increase comfort, and create a tidier, more aesthetically suitable appearance.
Labiaplasty is an awake procedure accomplished in our accredited San Diego surgical facility. The highest standards of safety, hygiene, privacy, and comfort are mandated and routine.
Long labia and/or bulky labia cause discomfort and/or may show, especially in tight fitting or minimal wear.
There is wide variation of normal labial anatomy. Excess labia may be irregularly shaped. There may be more on one side or the other. The excess may be concentrated in one part of the labia, either the front, the center, or much less commonly toward the back.
In planning labiaplasty, differences between right and left sides must be considered. Most women want symmetry between right and left sides. If one side is larger or longer to begin with, that side will be reduced more than the smaller side.
If the excess is distributed along the entire length of the labia from front to back, a variation of the trim technique meets the needs of most women. If excess skin is localized to one area, then modified wedge labiaplasty is preferred.
Each labiaplasty procedure is individually designed and accomplished based on the woman’s presenting appearance, her complaints, and the result she desires. Our very first part of the procedure is careful marking of labiaplasty skin to be removed. Then, complete anesthesia is achieved so labiaplasty is very comfortable. Although anxiety and fear surround labiaplasty for many women, it is usually an easy procedure and recovery.
Expert labiaplasty surgery requires skilled reduction and artistic, feminine re-shaping of the labia minora (“nymphae”). The nymphae are soft, pliable, erectile, sensitive ridges of skin. They partially cover and emerge from the glans clitoris in front, surround the urethral opening (“meatus”) and the vaginal introitus (entrance) centrally, and then become smaller toward the back, to reunite again as the “posterior fourchette.” Labia minora skin folds have an outer dry side and distal edge with a roughened (rugated) surface and an inner side that becomes pink and moist toward its base. The outer dry side is pink, or pigmented like surrounding skin. Skin on the edge is often more darkly pigmented, and inner labial skin is more thin, delicate, and specialized, with glands for lubrication. In front, labia minora divides into two folds, including the prepuce of the clitoris (clitoral hood) and the inner frenula, which unite in the midline at the clitoral base. The back third of the labia minora (toward the posterior fourchette and perineum) gradually becomes more thin and shortened, sometimes to disappear completely into skin of the labia majora.
Labia minora skin folds protect sensitive and delicate central structures (clitoris, urethral opening, and vaginal entrance), maintain moisture of vestibular surfaces, and prevent fecal contamination of the genito-urinary tract. Excess labia beyond what is needed for protection is unnecessary, and can be uncomfortable. Surgical trimming, re-shaping, and re-arranging labial excess doesn’t interfere with sexual, reproductive, or excretory functions. Innervation of remaining labial surfaces remains unchanged, provided surgical technique accommodates sensory function. Vaginal and clitoral mediated orgasm is unaffected by labiaplasty and other superficial procedures of labia minora, labia majora, and clitoral hood. Circulation of genital skin is abundant, which facilitates complication free healing.
Why Consider a Labiaplasty?
Women who choose labiaplasty want improved comfort and/or appearance. Labia minora sensitive skin folds protect the clitoris and the moist vaginal inroitus. Labia separate the outer dry skin from inner moist urine and vaginal openings. Labia minora also separate two entirely different microbial environments, the outer skin and anal flora from the inner vaginal lactobacillus and bifidobacterium. Women with large labia minora are distracted by a sensation of friction, skin folds trapped beneath tight clothing, and discomfort during sexual intercourse. If labia minora are asymmetric or visibly project beyond or hang below labia majora, length and/or bulk may be objectionable to their owner. Labiaplasty is a straightforward, uncomplicated, permanent solution that many women have embraced. Some proclaim that labiaplasty has been life-changing. For women who are self-aware of their labia, a small change to more proportionate size and more appealing shape offers a range of freedoms and enjoyments from comfortable athletic competition in high performance gear to snugly fitting tights or beautiful lingerie to romantic pleasures without fear or embarrassment.
Although standard techniques are described, Dr. Laverson individualizes his approach depending on your presentation and your desired result. Most often, some variation of the “modified wedge” labiaplasty is chosen, but an individually designed sculpted trim is a good alternative depending on your pigment distribution, preferred result, and the shape of your labia. Because each woman presents differently and has a particular idea of what she wants, like most plastic surgery procedures, labiaplasty is custom designed.
Your desired result will be demonstrated with a surgical marker so you’ll understand the proposed procedure in advance. Sensation and function are ALWAYS preserved, and appearance is ALWAYS improved. Unlike many surgeons, Dr. Laverson performs these procedures with optical magnification to achieve precision in every aspect of the result. The modified wedge procedure we favor offers a trim feminine appearance with no visible scar and matches darker outer skin pigment with inner pink mucosal pigment border. Sometimes, removal of more labia in a secondary procedure is necessary, but if so, it is a lesser and easier procedure for both doctor and patient than the initial labiaplasty, and is far preferable to over-reducing.
Visible scars, nodularity, irregularity, hypersensitivity, and deformity are avoided. Pigment transition from darker outer skin to pink inner labial and vaginal surfaces are aligned imperceptibly.
Other requested vulvar aesthetic procedures include labia majora reduction or augmentation, laser hair removal, labial de-pigmenting, and liposuction of enlarged mons pubis or labia majora.
Labiaplasty of the labia minora is the most common vaginal rejuvenation procedure. While there are standard techniques for trimming and contouring the labia, Dr. Laverson adopts an individualized approach for each woman. Advanced specialized surgical techniques are applied to enhance comfort and create a more youthful, revitalized vaginal appearance.
Often, Dr. Laverson incorporates some variation of a “wedge procedure,” to remove the central most elongated segment of labia minora. A carefully measured and marked wedge-shaped extra portion of the labia is removed without adversely affecting labia function, sensitivity, or sexual response. Remaining delicate labial folds are skillfully and artistically rearranged, matched, and coapted to preserve trim, naturally appearing, symmetric leaves of labia minora. For some women, a “trim procedure” is more appropriate. This technique involves reduction of outer labial edges and coapting more delicate usually pink inner and outer surfaces of labia minora along the entire length from front to back. Some combination of the wedge and trim approaches is sometimes best, depending on presenting situation and her preferred result.
Dr. Laverson’s customized labiaplasty of the labia minora refines contours and results in a more petite profile that appears and feels soft, feminine, and natural.
Labiaplasty of the labia majora, also known as labia majora-plasty, involves surgical reduction and re-contouring of the outer, hair-bearing labia. Some women grow prominent or large labia majora during adolescence. Others develop enlargement or loose extra labia majora skin as a result of aging, parturition (childbirth), multiple births, weight changes, or a combination of these. Labia majora-plasty reduces extra labial size, redundancy, or bulging and may improve related sweating, irritation, painful intercourse, or other symptoms caused by excessive labia fullness or sagging skin.
Labiaplasty of the labia majora may involve liposuction, fat transfer, Scultra(R) poly-L-lactic acid augmentation, skin removal to trim the labia majora, and/or other techniques. Skin removal reduces size by removing a keel-shaped portion of labia majora and concealing the closure in the folds of the vulva or at the top of the thighs. Resulting scars are usually invisible and undetectable. Absorbable internal sutures close the labia, so there are no visible stitches and no need for suture removal. Fat grafting, liposuction, and other measures are added for re-sizing or re-shaping as needed
Dr. Laverson designs labiaplasty procedures to accommodate presenting appearance and each woman’s preferences and desired outcome. In all cases, preservation of sensation and function is paramount for health, for comfort, for pleasure, and for aesthetic appeal.
Upon arrival in our office, before marking your skin, topical anesthesia numbs the treatment area. After marking, local anesthesia offers complete comfort during your labiaplasty procedure. Medication to help you relax further is also available if needed. Besides improving appearance and comfort, Dr. Laverson accomplishes a durable repair, facilitating healing and early return to normal activity. Apply a pad daily until there is no longer spotting (usually one week). We recommend our post-labiaplasty care, and provide you with supplies. This includes Dermoplast® 20% benzocaine anesthetic spray for pain relief, TUCKS® medicated (Witch Hazel) pads, and perineal spray wash for sensitive healing tissues to use at home after your procedure. We also prescribe mild narcotic analgesics (codeine, hydrocodone, or oxycodone with acetaminophen) to control discomfort, and antibiotic ointment to apply daily after gentle bathing. Trauma to the perineum should be avoided until pain and tenderness resolve, usually four to six weeks.
HYSQIA waterless intimate care products help you stay fresh and clean conveniently from your purse. HYSQIA is the highest quality feminine application available at this time.
Beyond self-care, ThermiVA vulvo-vaginal RF (radiofrequency) is a pain-free non-hormonal office treatment for vaginal dryness, stress urinary incontinence, labial and vaginal laxity, and other peri-menopausal changes. Many women describe improvements in sexual response after ThermiVA.
Post Labiaplasty Kit will go home with you.
Labiaplasty is an outpatient procedure that generally takes 2-3 hours, but Dr. Laverson’s approach includes advanced plastic surgical techniques, reinforced closures for durability, optical magnification for precision, and multiple layers of anesthesia which may extend the duration of surgery. Discomfort, if significant, lasts several days. Swelling may be severe, and lasts one to two weeks. Return to work is usually a few days. Sexual activity, sports, and fitness three to five weeks after labiaplasty, or whenever comfortable.
Recovery from surgery is rarely pleasant, but the above measures minimize discomfort and facilitate the best post-labiaplasty experience possible.
If you’re experiencing discomfort from extra large or long labia or you’re hoping for a prettier, tidier vaginal profile that looks and feels natural, delicate, trim, and soft to touch, labiaplasty may help. Call Dr. Steve Laverson now at Feel Beautiful San Diego Cosmetic Clinic located near La Jolla, (858) 295-4001 to schedule your free labiaplasty consultation.