There are many reasons why women may choose to have labia reduction surgery (labiaplasty).
Some women choose to undergo a labiaplasty because they feel self-conscious about the appearance of their labia and are looking for a more symmetrical and/or proportional shape.
Others choose to have a labiaplasty because their labia causes them some discomfort, whether from clothing, during intercourse, whilst playing sport, or their labia may be causing infection and/or irritation.
Labiaplasty aims to address these concerns by surgically removing the excess skin of the ‘labia minora’ (inner labia) to produce a more satisfactory labia.
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During your initial consultation, your surgeon will discuss with you your specific concernsand your expectations for the surgery. You will need to allow one hour for this appointment.
The surgeon will also discuss the potential risks and limitations of the surgery and will perform an assessment of your labia and the amount of excess skin you have.
You will also be required to provide a full medical history, which will assist the surgeon in understanding how appropriate the procedure might be for you. You will need to disclose all medications you take (including non-prescription medication), whether you are a smoker, your history of mental illness and whether you have a history of blood clots or excessive bleeding.
Your surgeon will also provide a tailored costing of your procedure, and can take you through before and after photos of previous patients to assist you in your decision-making process.
Your initial consultation is also the perfect opportunity to ask your surgeon about any concerns you may have – whether about the procedure itself, the risks involved or what the aftercare process is like.
Initial consultations are $145. You may be able to claim a portion of this from Medicare if you have a referral from your GP.
Your surgeon will advise you on how to best prepare for your labiaplasty to ensure you have a safe and comfortable surgical experience.
In the weeks leading up to your surgery, it may be necessary to stop taking certain medication, such as blood thinning agents, the contraceptive pill, Aspirin, Disprin, and non-steroidal anti-inflammatories. Certain medications can increase the likelihood of bleeding during surgery, which is why they’re very important to avoid.
Your surgeon may also require you to undergo further diagnostic tests, such as blood tests, to determine your bleeding tendencies and to assess your fitness for the anaesthetic.
It is essential that smoking is stopped at least six weeks before, and six weeks after surgery. Products containing nicotine can also impact the body’s wound healing process and these should also be avoided in the weeks leading up to surgery.
Your surgeon will advise you on medication designed to reduce the risk of thrush which will need to commence prior to surgery.
Risks of surgery are uncommon and occur infrequently. Nonetheless, patients need to be informed of the potential risks before they consent to having a labiaplasty.
Complications may include:
Revisional surgery is required for only a small percentage of patients – around 5 per cent – whose surgery has resulted in redundant skin and/or asymmetry.
Only once you have had all your questions and concerns addressed by the surgeon and understand all the potential risks involved, should you provide consent to the surgery.
After surgery, it’s normal to experience swelling of the soft tissue which can be the cause of some discomfort. However, this will improve over a few months.
During your initial consultation, your surgeon will be able to provide you with a cost of your procedure. Every patient’s requirements are unique, which is why costing is provided at a tailored price.
The Australian Medical Board also strongly advises against the advertising of set prices for regulated health services. This is why we do not provide any pricing on our website.
We invite you to contact the clinic before your initial appointment if you’d like to find out more about approximate costs and any applicable Medicare rebates. Please contact us on 03 9088 5000 or via online enquiry, to find out more.
The cost of your initial consultation with a surgeon is $175 ($225 for weekend consultations). You may be able to claim a portion of this from Medicare if you have a referral from a GP.
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Labiaplasty can be performed as day-surgery, under general or local anaesthetic with sedation. The surgeon will make incisions to trim and remove excess skin of the labia. They will be placed so as to be concealed by the inner aspect of the labia majora.
The surgeon will use dissolving stitches to close the skin, so they do not need to be removed at a later date. Afterwards, a urinary catheter may be inserted for a short period of time to minimise the risk of urinary retention.
You will need to take preventative medication to reduce the risk of wound infection and vaginal thrush caused by the antibiotics to optimise the wound healing process.
Following your surgery, you will be monitored in the recovery room and then discharged once you have fully recovered from the anaesthetic.
You’ll be given appropriate pain medication and antibiotics to control your discomfort and minimise the risk of infection.
You should report any severe pain, high temperature and abnormal bleeding to your doctor immediately.
To assist in managing your pain and to encourage healthy wound healing, you should avoid sitting down for longer than 15 minutes. You might also find that a haemorrhoid surgical cushion can help relieve some pain and discomfort when sitting.
To reduce the risk of infection following every bowel movement, it’s recommended to sit in a salt bath for ten minutes and shower thereafter.
You will see your surgeon for a series of post-operative visits, during which they will assess how your wounds are healing. Generally, wounds will heal within two to three weeks after surgery.
You can begin walking for exercise three weeks after surgery and resume running and normal exercise at six weeks. You can expect to return to work after two to three weeks, and resume intercourse after approximately a month after surgery.
It’s normal to experience swelling and bruising after the surgery, which generally subside approximately five to 10 days after surgery. It’s important to note that you may not be able to see the final result of your labiaplasty until a few months after your procedure, when all the soft tissue swelling has gone down.
To respect the privacy of our patients, we do not publish before and after photos on our website. We understand that such photos can assist in your decision-making process, and as such they are available for viewing during your consultation.
At NorthEast Plastic Surgery we hold patient privacy and discretion in the highest regard. For this reason, before and after photos are only available for viewing during a consultation with a surgeon. Photos are provided by previous clients who have consented to the private and discrete use, to assist others with their decision.
All patient appointments are coordinated via our Essendon practice