Labiaplasty

Labiaplasty or Labia Surgery can help eliminate discomfort and improve sexual response (1)Dr Scott Turner is one of the few specialist plastic surgeons who has expertise in Labiaplasty surgery in Australia. He has done hundreds of Labiaplasties, which you may ask to view during your confidential consultation. Dr Turner has clinic locations in Newcastle, the Northern Beaches and Bondi Junction. 

What are the Labia?

The Vulva, which refers to a woman’s external genitalia, consists of two sets of Labia. These are known as the Labia Minora, which are the inner lips, and the Labia Majora, which are the outer lips. The labia Majora encompasses the external genital area and is visible without the need to spread one’s legs. On the other hand, the Labia Minora are the two folds of skin located on each side of the vaginal opening and are situated within the Labia Majora. 

The labia minora, also known as the inner lips, play a crucial role in maintaining optimal moisture and hygiene levels of the vulva and vagina. They contribute to the natural lubrication and protection of the vaginal area.

On the other hand, the labia majora serves as a protective barrier for the delicate soft tissues of the vulva. It contains pubic hairs, which have a protective function by minimizing stress and friction on the rest of the vulva. This hair helps safeguard the vulva and surrounding areas.

Why do Women have Labiaplasty Surgery?

Numerous women experience discomfort or dissatisfaction with their genitalia, including concerns with the shape and size of their Labia Minora, Labia Majora and Clitoris Hood. In the past, women were often unaware of their options and felt hesitant to discuss such personal matters openly. 

Fortunately, this landscape is evolving, and Dr Turner sees women weekly about these concerns. Through addressing discomfort, enhancing sexual response, and achieving aesthetic improvements in the vaginal area, a labiaplasty can fulfil aspirations for many individuals.

What are the Benefits of Labiaplasty Surgery?

Unfortunately, numerous women still lack awareness regarding the available options for addressing their concerns. All our clinics offer a confidential and discreet environment where you will feel comfortable discussing your specific concerns with both our female nurse, as well as Dr Turner. 

Benefits will vary for each individual depending on their goals for surgery, however, a few commonalities include: 

  • Decreased pain and discomfort 
  • Correction of uneven labia minora 
  • Improved appearance of external genitalia 
  • Ability to comfortably wear tight clothing 
  • Improved tolerance to exercise 
  • Decreased or erased discomfort with sexual intercourse 

Clitoral Hood Reduction with Dr Turner

Clitoral Hood Reduction, also known as Hoodectomy, is a surgical procedure designed for women who experience excessive skin and hood covering the clitoral region. This procedure involves the careful trimming of excess skin to reduce bulkiness and achieve a more balanced appearance, it can also address issues such as discomfort and irritation and increase feelings of sexual pleasure (3).

Clitoral Hood Reduction is often combined with Labiaplasty surgery, and performed within an hour, which allows patients to be sent home on the same day.

Benefits of Clitoral Hood Reduction

Clitoral Hood Reduction is an ideal option for women who are facing emotional or physical challenges associated with an elongated clitoral hood. This procedure can offer several benefits, including:

  • Increased Sexual Pleasure: By surgically removing excess skin, this procedure can enhance sexual pleasure and sensation (3).
  • Enhanced Stimulation: This procedure has the potential to improve clitoral stimulation, leading to a heightened sexual experience
  • Increased Comfort: The surgery can alleviate discomfort 

How do ‘Normal-Looking Labia Appear?

Every woman has unique genital anatomy which includes variations in the appearance of the Labia and Clitoral Hood. There is no universally defined aesthetic ‘normal’ for labial appearance. Some women may notice that their Labia Minora protrudes beyond the Labia Majora during puberty, while others may experience enlargement of the Labia Minora after pregnancy. 

Ideally, the Labia Majora should provide complete coverage of the Labia Minora. However, over time, the Labia Minora may enlarge and extend beyond the Labia Majora. This can expose the delicate mucosal tissue of the Labia Minora to friction, resulting in pain, discomfort and hygiene concerns. 

It is important to understand that there is no ‘standard’ or ‘normal’ size or shape for Labia. The size and shape of the Labia are primarily influenced by genetics, but changes can also occur due to factors such as aging and childbirth. While some women may observe a return to their pre-pregnancy labial appearance, others may experience permanent changes. 

Each individual’s labial anatomy is unique and should be embraced as a natural variation rather than striving for a specific standard of appearance. 

About Labiaplasty Surgery

With modern labiaplasty techniques, we aim to correct large or misshapen labia and enhance the external appearance of the perineum.

Due to the growing recognition of the functional and cosmetic benefits offered by Labiaplasty surgery, it has become one of Dr Turner’s most frequently performed procedures.

Labiaplasty surgery is conducted under general anaesthesia in a fully accredited hospital, with the support of an anaesthetist. The procedure typically lasts between one and two hours, and most women are able to return home on the same day. 

During the surgery, small incisions are made to remove excess tissue while reducing or reshaping the Labia Minora. 

Different Labiaplasty Surgery Techniques

There are numerous different labiaplasty techniques that can be done to meet your unique needs and wishes. As a labiaplasty expert, Dr Turner is highly skilled at creating almost imperceptible scars that are hidden along the natural creases of the labia.

There is a range of different techniques that can be used, alone or in conjunction with others.

1. Tissue Trim Technique

The original technique used in labiaplasty was simply removing the tissue at the free edge of the labia minora. This is a procedure used by many surgeons because it’s quick to perform and easy to learn. This method can be a good option for women who want to eliminate the darkening of the inner labia, that comes with age and pregnancy.

The disadvantage of this technique is that the natural texture of the labia minora is lost. This creates an overly smooth and unnatural look. There’s also an increased risk of nerve damage. A major limitation of this technique is that it can’t deal with excess tissue around the clitoral hood. Even if you aren’t concerned with the shape of your clitoral hood now, you may find this method creates an odd-sized clitoral hood.

2. De-Epithelization Technique

The de-epithelization technique allows you to maintain the natural texture of the labia minora edge. With this method, an incision is made in the inner and outer wall so that you can keep a natural labia edgeThe disadvantage to the de-epithelialization technique is that the labium width could increase if a considerable amount of tissue needs to be de-epithelialized adding bulk to the labia. Also for those with large labia, the free margin is not reduced in length and appears wrinkly.

3. Wedge Resection Technique

The wedge resection technique removes a wedge of tissue from the labia minora thickest portion. This method preserves the labia’s natural texture for a natural look and has been a popular technique used by many surgeons performing labiaplasty surgery over the last decade.

There is, however, the potential of nerve damage when done as a full-thickness resection. Another drawback is that this method doesn’t address the hyperpigmentation of the labial edge and if too much tension is applied then there is a risk of wound separation.

Dr Turner’s Unique Style of Labia Surgery

There is no one best technique and, in fact, the best option for you could require a blend of multiple techniques. Every woman is different and so is her labia. To find the best approach, Dr Turner will create a plan that is customised to your unique needs and wishes. When several methods are used in combination, it is called a composite labiaplasty. Dr Turner will have an in-depth conversation to assess your needs and then discuss with you the advantages and disadvantages of the traditional techniques to create a treatment plan.

With expertise in Labiaplasty and Clitoral Hood Reduction surgeries, Dr Turner is an experienced specialist plastic surgeon who uses the most current techniques and surgical protocols. To reduce the risk of tissue damage and minimise possible scarring.

Recovery after Clitoral Hood Reduction

It is important to remember that each person is different and heals at a slightly different pace. Most patients are able to go back to work within three to four days after the surgery. You will have a follow-up post-op appointment, which should not be missed. During the first two weeks after the surgery, your body will start to heal. By the end of week two, your wound will be healed significantly, at which point you can start getting back to your usual activities.

Please avoid exercising at this point. Most people can get back to their exercise routine in four to six weeks after the surgery. It is best to avoid sexual intercourse for the first six weeks after the surgery. Always look for any signs of infections and if you spot any, immediately get in touch with your surgeon. 

The information provided is for general purposes only, it is not intended to replace a professional consultation with a qualified plastic surgeon. Invasive procedures carry inherent risks and potential complications which will be discussed in detail. Results vary and should be used only as a guide as every client is unique, which is why a second opinion is advisable. Learn more about the risks of plastic surgery at https://drturner.com.au/patient-resources/risks-complications-of-surgery/

References:

  1. Turini T, Weck Roxo AC, Serra-Guimarães F, et al. The Impact of Labiaplasty on Sexuality. Plast Reconstr Surg. 2018;141(1):87-92. doi:10.1097/PRS.0000000000003921
  2. Sorice-Virk S, Li AY, Canales FL, Furnas HJ. Comparison of Patient Symptomatology before and after Labiaplasty. Plast Reconstr Surg. 2020;146(3):526-536. doi:10.1097/PRS.0000000000007081
  3. PULATOĞLU Ç, ELLİBEŞ KAYA A. Relationship of orgasm with measurable dimensions of clitoris and visibility of clitoral glans. Journal of Surgery and Medicine. Published online May 30, 2020. doi:https://doi.org/10.28982/josam.727165