What is Labiaplasty
Labiaplasty is a surgical procedure to re-contour the shape of the female genitalia with specific focus on the smaller inner lip or the labia minora. Specifically, the area and size of the labia minora is reduced. Labiaplasty may also involve changes to the mons pubis or labia majora (the outer lip) depending on your request.
How is the procedure performed
Labiaplasty is performed only after you are comfortable with your initial consult (examination with a chaperone) and are able to make an informed decision and consent to proceed with the operation. Having done so, the most common option for labiaplasty is to do this under twilight light sedation and local anaesthetic infiltration. You will feel sleepy during this time but patients are not unconscious in any way since only light sedation is used with a primary focus on numbing creams and local anaesthetic agents on the skin. This has been shown to be safe, satisfying and avoids the risks of general anaesthesia. This should not deter you from having a general anaesthetic if at all you feel more comfortable doing so. Only when you are comfortable, the operation begins with antiseptic solution applied gently on the surface of the skin. You will be given antibiotics through the drip in your arm in order to reduce the risk of infection. A very thin layer of skin is carefully removed with advanced surgical techniques and instruments. The majority of the important structures beneath the skin such as the deep tissue layers, blood vessels and especially nerves are aimed to be preserved. Sometimes smaller nerves that escape to the level of the skin cannot be seen are released since the excess skin would need to be removed. Modern techniques, which Dr Nara bases his surgical practice on, aims to respectfully preserve these deeper structures as much as possible. This in turn helps to reduce risks of surgery. When the tailored amount of tissue is removed, the wound is stitched with absorbable sutures. Sterile ointments are applied, followed by thin dressings.
After your surgery
After surgery we will ensure that you are stable to return home by making a clinical assessment and ensuring you are comfortable. You will not be allowed to drive home on the same day so please organise someone to look after you for the first 24 hours in terms of driving and being with you on the first night. Light exercises can be resumed 3-4 weeks after surgery. Usual exercises can be resumed at 6 weeks. Depending on the work you do, Dr Nara would prefer you to take time off work for 1 week and to resume light duties for the week after. After surgery, consistent with the effects of gravity from the body, and pressure from the contraction of surrounding muscles of the perineum or genital region, you may expect there to be some discomfort but it should not be unbearable. Here, we provide you with pain relief medications but more importantly urge you to take it easy on the first 5 days after surgery. It may seem that the area may seem bruised and swollen as though you had accidentally bumped into an unexpected object. We expect this to be normal but it should not be excessively swollen or bruised. It is acceptable to have some bruising and swelling since the surrounding red blood cells will surround the wound in order to heal. Here, special medication and compliance after surgery is important so we urge you to work together. Therefore, please plan ahead of time regarding time of work and at least rest and relaxation away from excessive exercise activities. Please refrain from sexual intercourse at least 5 weeks after surgery or whenever the wound is stable. This will be determined at the 4-week clinic check. Alteration to the timeline of resuming of these activities (physical and sexual) will be better determined at this mark. It is important for you to empty your bladder and continue bowel motions normally after surgery. Therefore, it is important for you to keep applying antiseptic ointments daily and regularly for the first 2 weeks. This will continue up to the 4-week mark but is less frequent. Constipation. Some patients may experience constipation because of perceived pain, embarrassment and avoidance after surgery. This is normal. The best way to manage this is to stick to a light diet after surgery as per your preference. So please stock your fridge (before and after surgery) with high fibre foods, citrus fruit and protein supplements of your choice at weekly intervals. This will help you with a speedy and comfortable healing process. If you are not sure about the wound in terms of gaping of the wound, leaking, pain, stinging or anything of a concern then please contact us at Norwood Day Surgery to speak to Dr Nara or one of our lovely nurses. We are always happy and ready to listen to your concerns and to quickly address any queries you may have. We want you to have a comfortable experience and be supported during this time.