Labiaplasty is the term for recontouring of the female genitalia, or labia. Women have two pairs of labia: the inner, hairless skin folds next to the vaginal opening are the labia minora and the outer, hair bearing folds are the labia majora.
Labiaplasty of the minora may correct natural asymmetry, excess size, or changes due to prior trauma to the labia, such as may occur with childbirth. This procedure is the most common type of labiaplasty and it is easily performed under local anesthesia in my office. After revising the excess skin, small sutures are used to repair the labia. The sutures are removed within two weeks, yielding a scar which is invisible in most patients.
In some patients, particularly those with larger minora, excess skin folds are also found on either side of the clitoral hood. These extra folds can also be recontoured at the time of labiaplasty to achieve improved balance of the remaining genital skin.
Labiaplasty of the majora is performed when patients have significant sagging or enlargement of the majora. These concerns may result from significant weight fluctuations such as may occur with pregnancy or they may be just from loss of elasticity of the skin during the aging process. Majoraplasty is also usually performed in my office.
HOW IS A LABIAPLASTY PERFORMED?
Most labiaplasties are performed in my office using local anesthesia. On the day of the procedure, the patient will lie on an exam table with her legs supported in special padded stirrups of my design: Harvey Stirrups. The skin to be removed is marked and then an antiseptic solution applied to the vulva. A numbing cream is placed on the skin and after 20 minutes, novacaine is injected at the base of the labia using a small needle similar to what dentists use. Patients may feel a tiny bee sting sensation or nothing at all.
The excess skin is surgically removed and the incisions meticulously closed with deep and superficial sutures. An antibiotic ointment and an ice pack are applied before the patient leaves the office. A prescription for pain medication is provided and postoperative instructions reviewed. Patients receive a call from me the night of the surgery and are also given my phone number in case they have any concerns. They return in approximately two weeks for suture removal. Most activities may be resumed within three weeks.
HOW MUCH DO LABIAPLASTIES COST AND DOES INSURANCE COVER ANYTHING?
Most labiaplasties are considered cosmetic procedures and are therefore not covered by insurance. The majority of labiaplasties cost between $2000 and $3000. Price is based on the amount of surgery performed plus overhead costs of equipment, medical supplies and staff time required. Occasionally there will be coverage by some carriers for less involved procedures such as repair of trauma to a labia from childbirth or an accident. My Billing Office will give you a breakdown of the cost and help determine if there is any insurance coverage.