Are you considering vulvovaginal cosmetic surgery such as labiaplasty, vaginoplasty, vaginal reconstruction, or vaginal rejuvenation? Your search for the ideal surgeon starts here. Whether you reside in California, elsewhere in the United States, or even abroad, finding the right expert to entrust with your intimate desires, expectations, and the well-being of your vulva and vagina is crucial. This blog will provide you with a concise framework to help you select the best surgeon for your unique needs.
Step 1: Assess Expertise and Qualifications
Begin your journey by examining a prospective surgeon’s website. Look for their portfolio of before and after photos showcasing their work in labiaplasty, vaginoplasty, vaginal reconstruction, and vaginal rejuvenation. Determine if they possess specific knowledge and understanding of the procedure you desire. Seek evidence of their expertise, which can be in the form of before and after photos from at least twenty-four procedures or official documentation, such as completion certificates from renowned trainers.
Remember, expertise is not merely attending lectures; it requires the completion of a rigorous two-day intensive course. If a surgeon’s website lacks substantial before and after photos or fails to demonstrate evidence of training, exercise caution and avoid choosing that surgeon.
Step 2: Schedule Consultations with Two Surgeons
Arrange appointments, either in-person or virtually, with at least two different surgeons. For virtual consultations, provide clear, close-up photos of your vulva from different angles: above, straight-on with your legs apart, and from left and right angles. During in-person visits, pay attention to how the office staff treats you. Are they knowledgeable and respectful? Do they address your concerns and provide comprehensive explanations? When you meet with the surgeon, ensure they are easy to communicate with, fully comprehend your expectations and desired outcomes, and discuss your anatomy, reasonable expectations, recovery, anesthesia, and more. Additionally, confirm if they are experienced enough to perform surgery in their in-office surgical suite, under local anesthesia for both labiaplasty and vaginal reconstruction procedures. This offers a safer, easier recovery at a lower cost.
Step 3: Evaluate Aftercare Arrangements
The availability of immediate and ongoing aftercare is vital. Assess whether both the office staff and the surgeon thoroughly discuss aftercare arrangements to your satisfaction. Do you feel safe and well-supported? The surgeon should provide detailed information about surgical planning, the procedure itself, pain management, and short-term as well as long-term recovery. Ensure that all your questions have been answered.
Step 4: Informed Consent and Risk Discussion
An experienced and meticulous surgeon will allocate ample time to discuss risks and obtain your informed consent. This aspect is often overlooked by inexperienced or rushed surgeons. If you plan to travel for your surgery, consider if the surgeon’s staff is helpful in making local arrangements and understands the challenges you may face when returning home post-surgery.
Step 5: Consider Finances
Take into account the financial aspect and examine individual surgeons’ fees, as they can serve as an indicator of their experience. Seasoned surgeons are aware that most labial reduction and vaginal tightening procedures are deemed cosmetic by insurance companies. Inexperienced gynecologists may incorrectly bill these procedures to