Labiaplasty Recovery: FAQ’s

Labiaplasty is a surgical procedure to remove excess tissue in labia minora, which is usually described as sagging or protruding inner vaginal lips. Though having long or multiple folds of labia minora is common and natural, some women may experience physical discomfort and irritation when wearing certain clothing during sexual intercourse, or even sitting on a bicycle seat. Furthermore, those who suffer from excess tissue in the labia can even experience a feeling of self-consciousness in public and intimate settings. Labiaplasty surgery effectively and permanently eliminates the excess labia tissue. This, in turn, allows the inner lips of the vagina to lie folded neatly within the outer lips of the labia.

Is labiaplasty surgery painful? What is the recovery and downtime?

While the labia minora is a delicate area of the female body, the recovery from a labiaplasty procedure is, in fact, rather simple. As with any surgical procedure, pain medication is typically required after surgery. At Synergy Plastic Surgery, your safety is of utmost importance, and our board-certified plastic surgeons are dedicated to ensuring that you receive the best quality care, before and after your surgery. Therefore, we will be closely monitoring your recovery to ensure maximum comfort, safety, and results.

Typically, a week off work is recommended to allow for quiet healing, however this will all depend on your unique case and anatomy.

For your safety and comfort, loose, comfortable clothing is suggested, as well as an absorbent mini pad to absorb minor spotting for a few days. In terms of menstruation, sanitary napkins or mini-pads are typically recommended instead of tampons for the first menstrual cycle after surgery. Common symptoms such as itching, bruising, and swelling often resolve in the span of a few days to a couple of weeks. Usually, patients can return to normal physical activity and lifestyle 3-4 weeks after surgery. Patients are advised to avoid sexual activity until the area of incision is fully healed. It can take up to 2 months until the scars are strong enough to resume sexual activity.

How long will I experience swelling and itching after surgery?

Some common symptoms you may experience after labiaplasty surgery may include swelling and itching during your recovery. As with any surgery recovery, your body will undergo its natural wound healing process and produces histamines. According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, histamines are what cause the itchy feeling at the site of the surgical incision. Therefore, itching after labiaplasty is expected and common during the first week of your recovery. If excessive itching persists, is important to consult with your plastic surgeon. Excessive or persistent itching can be a symptom of an infection, such as a yeast or bacterial infection, or even an allergic reaction to a prescribed medication.

Furthermore, as the body continues to heal itself, thousands of cells are sent to the healing area, which is the site of the surgical incision. This is the first stage of the site of incision healing during recovery and is referred to as the inflammatory phase. The influx of cells to the area of incision is what leads to swelling after your surgical procedure. Generally, swelling after surgery increases up to 2-3 days post-op, and then gradually begins to subside over the following weeks. Typically, the swelling, as well as the initial pain after surgery and itching, should decrease significantly a week after your procedure.

Is there any scarring involved with a labiaplasty?

A labiaplasty procedure is the surgical removal of excess labia tissue, which often entails the trimming of excess skin. According to the National Library of Medicine, scarring is the body’s response and part of the natural healing process after skin tissue is damaged or cut. When the skin is lacerated, the tissues break down, which causes a protein called collagen to be released. To protect itself, your body is aiming to help heal and strengthen the wound by building up collagen where the tissue is damaged.

As shown above, collagen is released and building to heal the wound, subsequently creating a scar in the process. Photo Credit: Wiley Online Library

However, rest assured that though scars are inevitable in any surgery, the modern techniques and equipment we use at Synergy Plastic Surgery can greatly reduce scars’ appearance! Our board-certified plastic surgeons have extensive training in the minimization of scars. Whenever possible they hide incisions in skin folds while using special suturing techniques. In fact, the scar you are left with after a labiaplasty surgery often blends in very well into the natural wrinkles and folds of the labia minora tissue.

Excess labia tissue can cause pain and irritation, sensitivity, and embarrassment for many women. If you’re ready to experience improved confidence and comfort in everyday activities, a labiaplasty may be right for you. At Synergy Plastic Surgery, our board-certified plastic surgeons offer complimentary personalized consultations to create a plan tailored to your unique anatomy and aesthetic goals. Call (512) 244-1444 to unlock your Synergy Experience today!

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