Labiaplasty is a cosmetic surgery procedure that reshapes or reduces the labia minora (the small inner lips of the vagina). This is done to perfect the appearance of the vagina, reduce discomfort and pain and enhance sexual gratification. Depending on your anatomy and desired results, as well as the experience and preference of your surgeon, there are three different techniques that can be used.
The trim technique simply removes excess tissue by cutting away the edges of the labia minora. In general, this method is most useful when the goal of the procedure is to remove rough and/or discolored outer edges from the labia. This technique is also used when the labiaplasty is being performed in conjunction with a clitoral hood reduction because both procedures can be completed using a single incision. While this technique can successfully reshape and renew the labia minora, it can also lead to stiffness and discomfort along the incision, as well as a loss of sensation1-7 if not done by an experienced surgeon
Oftentimes lasers are used to trim the edge of the labia minora, a technique known as laser labiaplasty.8 Using the lasers instead of the traditional trim technique has some advantages: shortens the time needed to complete the procedure, reduces bleeding, but can lengthen recovery time. However, this method removes the normal labial edges and can result in an unnatural appearance. The heat generated by the laser can also damage tissue and nerve endings, leading to other complications.
In cases that do not involve issues along the labial edge, only an excess of tissue or asymmetry, the wedge method is often used. This method removes a wedge-shaped section of tissue from the middle third of the labia and then stitches the top and bottom sections back together.2 This technique preserves the normal appearance of the labial edge. The interior incision also means that less stress is placed on the stitches, reducing complications. However, occasionally this closure breaks down, causing a gap in the labia and requiring a second surgery to fix it.
As with all cosmetic procedures there are positives and negatives associated with undergoing any type of labiaplasty. However, by choosing an experience, certified plastic surgeon you can minimize the risks and finally achieve the results you desire.
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