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Enduring Constant Pain And Discomfort From Enlarged Labia


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You Are Ready To Begin . . . What Happens Next?

How Do You Proceed With Labiaplasty And What Can You Expect?

Reviewed by Michael Goodman, M.D.
November 18, 2016

You’ve read about a labiaplasty surgeon’s credentials and you’ve documented that they have performed a large number of procedures and have the experience or formal training required—you are now ready to take the next steps. 

Below is a guideline outlining the process.  Keep in mind that these steps are not exactly the same for every surgeon, but typically they are the proper steps to proceed with your surgery. 

Typically, a two-night stay is required for out-of-town patients.  Your surgeon's office staff can assist in the arrangement of hotel accommodations (staying at their recommended hotel usually includes a discount for their patients.)

  1. Contact the surgeon you are considering by telephone and/or email them the issues you are concerned with.  They will most likely give you a telephone call, or an email response to further discuss your case.  In most instances, the telephone consult or email follow up is free of charge.  At that time, the surgeon will either ask for a few photographs of the problematic areas (if you are not local) that you can take yourself and they may suggest a preoperative consultation.

  2. If you are nearby, they will suggest that you schedule an initial meeting to examine you, and to discuss your case.  You may have to pay for this consult in some instances, but don’t be deterred if so, because the best surgeons have limited time and hence it will be money WELL spent.  Even if a consultation fee is charged, they will usually credit the cost of this consult when you have your labiaplasty surgery performed.  If you are not local to the area, they may send you a forms package to fill out and instruct you to send it back to them.

  3. If you are out-of-town, they will likely suggest that you come to the surgeon’s office the day before the intended surgery. You may be scheduled for preoperative tests and medical forms processing.  These may include your medical history, a brief examination, blood tests, and consent forms if you’ve not already had these done and sent to the surgeon in advance (you might be given a pre-examination “kit” to fill out and bring with you, or send to the surgeon beforehand).  You will then meet with the surgeon for an evaluation and to discuss your expectations.  If they believe you are a good candidate you will then proceed with the surgery.  PLEASE BE AWARE THAT THERE IS ALWAYS A CHANCE THAT UPON MEETING WITH YOUR SURGEON, THEY MAY DECIDE NOT TO PERFORM SURGERY IF THEY BELIEVE YOU ARE NOT A GOOD CANDIDATE.

  4. Labiaplasty is an outpatient procedure usually performed under local anesthesia or twilight anesthesia.  This can be done in a surgery center, or State Approved office operating room. 

  5. After your surgery you’ll be taken to a Recovery Room where nurses will monitor your vital signs until you are ready to leave (usually in under an hour). You’ll return to your hotel where you’ll rest until the next morning.  You may experience some mild discomfort and swelling, which usually disappears completely after 1-2 weeks. Labial incisions usually heal well and are rarely noticeable.

  6. If you are from out-of-town, your surgeon will check your condition the next morning when they meet with you, and apply new dressings (bandages) if necessary.  They’ll also give you instructions, both written and verbally, concerning your post-operative condition, including advice on your daily routine and activities. Then, you’re free to go home.

  7. During your healing process, your surgeon will be in contact with you by telephone so they can monitor your progress. They are usually available twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week for any questions you might have about your condition.  If a serious problem arises that your surgeon feels cannot be handled by telephone or in person (if local), they’ll instruct you to check with your family doctor or go to the nearest Emergency Room. Your surgeon will then be in contact with your doctor(s) directly.

  8. You can return to work usually 3 to 4 days after surgery.  If you have more than one procedure you can usually return to work in 6 to 7 days. It is strongly recommended that you use no tampons, no thong or G-string underwear, or have sex for about 4 - 6 weeks. As with any surgery, complete healing can take over 3 months.

  9. As with any operation there are certain risks. Risks may include bleeding, infection, scarring, wound separation (dehiscence), and asymmetry.  Sensory changes (hypersensitivity or loss) are extremely rare.  Although these events are usually infrequent, they sometimes can occur. Studies show that over 95% of women do have a heightened sexual experience following labiaplasty surgery. Specific complications vary with both Labiaplasty and Vaginoplasty and these will be discussed with you during your consultation. To put the risk in perspective, pregnancy is associated with far more risk than any of these procedures.


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