Hypertrophy of the small labia causes aesthetic and functional impairment

Labia hypertrophy of the vulva may occur in adolescence (juvenile primary hypertrophy), after child birth or after menopause (false hypertrophy by ptosis of the vulva). The natural asymmetry between the two lips may be accentuated.
This hypertrophy, while it is difficult to talk about during consultation, could be the cause low self-esteem and can cause discomfort when undressing in front of a partner. This hypertrophy can cause difficulties for wearing clothing (tight jeans, thongs, and swimwear), limit certain sporting activities (horse riding, cycling …) and cause discomfort or pain during intercourse.
However, surgeons need to remain cautious regarding procedures to correct labia minora that are deemed to be too big, and if the surgeon believes that the patient’s request is justified, part of the procedure can be covered by health insurance.

Guidelines for nymphoplasty reduction or labiaplasty

The excess skin on the small lips is removed :

  • either by a simple resection with dissolvable sutures. The advantage of this technique is its simplicity ; there is no risk of delayed healing
  • or by V shaped plasty. The result is then more aesthetic but there a risk of delayed healing.

The technique is chosen on a case-by-case basis depending on various factors (quantity of lips to be removed, age of the patient, etc.)
The labial plastic surgery is performed on an outpatient basis (released the same day) under assisted local anesthesia (type analgesia). The procedure lasts from 20 to 30 minutes. Shaving is not necessary before surgery.

After the procedure

Strict instructions should be followed :

  • taking showers with a mild soap + disinfectant are permitted from the day following the procedure ;
  • wearing pantyliners ;
  • wearing loose clothing ;
  • not having sex for three weeks following the operation ;
  • not taking baths for three weeks following the operation ;
  • not doing sports like horse or bike riding for 2-3 months.

The after effects are not painful.

Scar healing is achieved between 10 and 15 days. The stitches are dissolvable. Complete healing is achieved around 1 month.
Any imperfections may be touched-up 6 months after the procedure, if necessary.

Risk of complications

As with any surgery, a number of complications can occur. But the likelihood of these complications is reduced in the hands of a qualified plastic surgeon and in the presence of a competent anesthetist. The patient’s compliance to instructions given by the surgeon is also essential and include:

  • stopping smoking 1 month before and after the procedure (reduction of all risks) ;
  • not taking aspirin for 10 days before and after the procedure (reduced risk of hematoma).

For this type of surgery, complications are very rare and usually not serious : a little bleeding at the scar, delayed healing of the wound, temporary enhanced sensitivity, etc…