“I am in my early thirties and I feel like my labia are sizable and have
become “larger and dangly” after the birth of my children. Working out has always been a part of my daily routine. However, I feel very self-conscious because my private parts seem to stick out and appear visible through my leggings. I also feel an uncomfortable rubbing sensation when I am running on the treadmill. I just don’t like how they look and feel! Is there anything to help this?”
There absolutely is… Labiaplasty!
Labiaplasty is a plastic surgery procedure that usually involves reducing the size of one or both sets of labia. The goal is to enhance the aesthetic look of the external female genitalia. “A neat, tucked in look appears to be the cosmetic norm for women today”. Meaning, that your labia minora (inner lips) are no longer protruding past your labia majora (outer lips). Labiaplasty may also be performed to correct the labia following injury, especially after childbirth; to relieve symptoms of rubbing, chafing, and discomfort or pain with intercourse. The procedure is not performed directly to enhance sexual enjoyment, but in many cases, the psychological benefits associated with a labiaplasty do improve a patient’s sexual life.
What’s the best way to choose the person to trust with your desires,
your expectations, your precious vulva, and vagina?
1) Are they trained and experienced in the specific procedure you want?
Have they provided specific, individual pages on their website displaying their knowledge of the procedure? Can they provide proof of their expertise? Proof can come in two forms: either individual before and after photos, and/or specific evidence (Certificate of Completion) that they’ve been trained by one of the acknowledged trainers in the U.S. or abroad. These trainers are Dr. Red Alinsod; Dr. Troy Hailparn; Dr. David Matlock; Dr. Marco Pelosi; Dr. Alex Bader; Dr. Adam Ostrzensky, and Dr. Michael Goodman.
If your potential surgeon’s site exhibits very few before and after pictures and/or no evidence of training, STAY AWAY from this surgeon!
2) Make an appointment, either in-person or “virtually”, with at least two different surgeons.
A virtual appointment is one in which you send close up, in-focus photo files of your vulva from several different positions: viewed from above; looking straight-on with your knees spread apart so that the vaginal opening can be seen, and a look from both left and right straight-on angles.
If you have an in-person visit, pay attention to how you are treated by the office personnel! Are they knowledgeable? Do they treat you with respect, ask the right questions, explain and help, or are they curt, busy, and display little-to-no knowledge? When you speak with the doctor, are they easy to communicate with? Do they fully understand your feelings, expected outcome, and what you wish to accomplish both functionally and aesthetically? Do they discuss your anatomy, reasonable expectations, recovery, anesthesia, etc? Finally, are they experienced enough that they are comfortable performing surgery in their in-office surgical suite, under easier-to-recover-from, safer, and less expensive local anesthesia (for both labiaplasty and vaginal reconstruction procedures)?
3) Arrangements for immediate and ongoing aftercare are important!
Is this discussed to your satisfaction by both office staff and by the
surgeon? Do you feel safe? Has your prospective surgeon carefully
discussed all aspects of surgical planning, the procedure itself, pain control methods, immediate and long-term recovery? Have each and every one of your questions been answered?
4) Has your surgeon candidly discussed risk and given you careful and complete Informed Consent?
Meticulous, experienced surgeons take time for this often overlooked
aspect of total care, while inexperienced surgeons — or those who are “in
too much of a hurry” frequently overlook it. If you will be traveling for your surgery, is the surgeon’s staff helpful in making local arrangements? Do they understand the difficulties you face in returning home a reasonable time after your surgery?
5) Finances are important. Individual surgeon’s fees can give you a window into their experience.
Experienced surgeons are aware that virtually all labial reduction and vaginal tightening surgical procedures are considered cosmetic by insurance companies, who can withdraw preliminary payments to hospitals and surgeons if they realize the truth about an individual procedure. Only an inexperienced gynecologist will bill an insurance company for what they call a partial vulvectomy and book your case as a labial amputation.
I have always had a vision to provide women with awareness, options, and solutions. I take pride in providing a safe space for women to explore choices for their sexual health, rejuvenating their appearance, and improving their lives. I understand the intensely personal and sexual health issues involved in these surgeries and am dedicated to patients having the best outcomes with the highest levels of safety and comfort. If you have questions, please contact my office and make arrangements for a personal consultation!