What is labiaplasty?

Labiaplasty is a surgical procedure designed to reduce and/or reshape the labia minora and/or labia majora, the inner and outer "lips" of skin that cover the female clitoris and vaginal opening.

Why do women choose to have labiaplasty?

Whether extra large or misshapen labia is caused by genetics, childbirth or changes in age or weight, women choose labiaplasty for a variety of reasons. In some cases, an enlarged labia causes physical pain during intercourse, an uncomfortable feeling during daily activities or irritation when wearing tight-fitting clothing. Others dislike the look and feel of an asymmetrical labia and choose labiaplasty to help them feel more physically attractive and emotionally self confident. Sometimes the removal of extra skin around the clitoris is most important for enhancing a woman's sexual experience.

How long is the surgery and recovery?

Labiaplasty takes approximately one to two hours, and the surgery is performed under local or general anesthesia, which ever you prefer. After surgery, some mild discomfort and swelling may last for up to two weeks, but most women return to work or daily routines in three to five days. A small incision scar heals so that is is barely visible.

How does labiaplasty affect sexual sensitivity?

While sometimes the removal of extra labia skin allows for less pain during intercourse or greater arousal due to increased exposure of the highly sensitive clitoris, the labia is not directly associated with sexual sensitivity. Because labia sensory nerve fibers only transmit pain sensation when stretched or torn, there is no evidence that labiaplasty interferes with sexual stimulation.

What are the social implications associated with labiaplasty?

Once considered a rare procedure, labiaplasty has become a more prominent and accepted cosmetic surgery. As general awareness of sexual problems and needs have grown through the  introduction of male enhancement products, so too has the discussion and social acceptance of women's sexual performance and appearance. While labiaplasty is clearly a personal, private choice, there is increased awareness around this emerging form of cosmetic surgery.

How do I know if labiaplasty is right for me?

Only you, with the help of a doctor, can decide whether labiaplasty is the right choice for you.