Disproportionately large, sagging, or discolored labia minora (the inner skin flaps that protect the opening of the vagina) can affect a woman’s confidence in the bedroom. Some women are born with large labia, while others find that their labia have become loose and stretched after childbirth or as they age. Deformities of the labia can cause embarrassment, decreased sexual satisfaction, and, in some cases, pain during physical and sexual activities. To reduce the size and improve the appearance of the labia, New Orleans cosmetic surgeons, Dr. Kamran Khoobehi and Dr. Jules Walters, perform labiaplasty to achieve a more pleasing labia appearance.
Women who are considering labiaplasty should consult with a qualified cosmetic surgeon. In the past, before surgeons improved this procedure, the approach was to remove the excess tissue and skin deformity using an amputation method. Today, skilled surgeons use aesthetic reshaping techniques so that the labia are not only reduced in size, but also the nerves are protected in the process so that sexual feeling is not compromised. A surgeon with experience will preserve the natural color and contour and create a result that looks visually appealing with minimal to no scarring.
Labiaplasty Surgical Process
The most common approach surgeons take to perform labiaplasty is to use a device known as Iris Scissors. This fine, advanced surgical tool allows the surgeon to reshape the inner folds of the labia. In the process, a clean “V” shaped wedge is made to the vaginal lips, and is removed to reduce the size. The surgeon will carefully work to reshape and reconstruct the lips so that they meet the patient’s aesthetic goals. Dissolvable sutures are used to close the incision. Another approach is to use a laser treatment to reduce the labia. This is effective for some patients, but is only recommended in cases where the skin defect is minimal.
"Dr. Walters is an amazing doctor! I was very nervous going in for a breast augmentation and labiaplasty. He made me feel very comfortable and explained everything and answered any question I had. His staff are friendly and helpful. I'm now 6 weeks post op and couldn't be happier with the results! I'd highly recommend him to anyone!"- M.M. / Vitals / May 03, 2016
"Dr. Walters is an amazing doctor! I was extremely nervous going in for a breast augmentation and labiaplasty. He made me feel very comfortable and explained everything and answered any question I had. His staff are all very friendly and helpful. I'm now 6 weeks post op and extremely happy with my results! I'd highly recommend him to anyone!"- M.M. / Healthgrades / May 05, 2016
Labiaplasty typically takes between 1-2 hours to complete, depending on how complex the surgical case is. It is performed under general anesthesia at an accredited surgical facility and does not require an overnight stay. Women who undergo labia rejuvenation will need to avoid any activity that may cause swelling and bleeding, such as exercise, sexual activity, douching, and the use of tampons. These activities can be resumed slowly around 4-6 weeks post-op. Women find that the results of this procedure look so natural that their self-confidence and self-image are improved drastically.
Labiaplasty is a surgery that is sometimes covered by medical insurance. This is generally the case if the condition is causing problematic symptoms. The procedure itself can run between $3,000-$5,000. It is a procedure that is now offered by many cosmetic surgeons.
OBGYN or Cosmetic Surgeon?
When researching the aesthetic surgery market, most patients will find that a large majority of cosmetic surgeons offer labiaplasty. While many OBGYNs are capable of performing labia rejuvenation, the procedure is most often considered cosmetic. An OBGYN will be able to surgically remove any excess that exists within the labia; however, a cosmetic surgeon will consider the aesthetics as well. This ensures that scarring is minimal, and that color, contour and symmetry looks and feels natural.
Does it Cause Insensitivity?
As with any surgery, there may be numbness in the vaginal area after the procedure is completed. This is temporary as the skin and vaginal lips heal. In regards to sensitivity, it is important to understand that labia rejuvenation affects, for the most part, the vaginal lips only. Sensitivity is served by the clitoris. A skilled cosmetic surgeon that specializes in labiaplasty will work around this area so that a loss of sensitivity does not occur.
Does it Affect Intercourse?
Labiaplasty, when performed by a skilled surgeon, will only improve sexual intercourse. In many cases, this is because the excess skin and tissue that may have gotten in the way during sex before will now be removed. The clitoral region will be protected and the sensory nerves preserved so that sexual intercourse is not impacted in a negative way.
Before or After Pregnancy?
In most cases, it is recommended that women wait to have labia rejuvenation until after all pregnancies are complete. However, if having enlarged labia is bothersome and causes physical symptoms and emotional hardship, then this surgery can most definitely be performed before a planned pregnancy. If the results of the surgery are compromised due to a post-surgical pregnancy, a second surgery can be discussed.
Plan Your Procedure
- Average Cost
- $3,600 - $5,000
- Recovery Time
- 4-6 Weeks
- Average Procedure Time
- 1-2 Hours
- Post-op Follow-up
- Procedure Recovery Location