Obstetrician Surgeon-Gynecologist Dr. Nikolaos Naoum, specializing in Cosmetic Gynecology, talks about the much-discussed Labiaplasty procedure and replies to all your questions.
- Doctor, what is Labiaplasty and which women usually resort to it?
Our clinical experience shows that one out of two women presents some sort of deformity in the genitals area. It is a huge percentage to remain unobserved, even if a large part of women has learned to live with it until today!
Labiaplasty is the operation assisting us to restore any deformity in the area, so that the final result is precisely what the woman wants. Such operations include the increase or decrease of the labia size, the restitution of the area’s color deformity (whitening) and the reduction of the vagina’s width. Usual candidates are women who have long or relaxed, small or large labia. This situation leads to irritation, redness, pain and discomfort, mostly during intercourse, exercise, etc., while it significantly affects her confidence when wearing bathing suits, tight clothes, etc.
- Which women need to reduce the width of their vagina?
Usually, women who have had 1 or 2 natural child births. In that case, the vagina widens, and women do not feel at ease with themselves, their sexual activity decreases and they experience incontinence. Sometimes, the width of the vagina must also be fixed in cases of abrupt weight loss or receiving hormones. In each case, Labiaplasty restores the vagina’s width to normal and results are permanent.
- Does labiaplasty happen only for aesthetic purposes?
Naturally, the aesthetic aspect of the genitals area plays a very important role for a sexually active woman, who wishes for her and her partner to enjoy their contact to the fullest.
On the other hand, Labiaplasty also takes place for functional reasons. When a woman is having a hard time putting on jeans or tight clothes, when she suffers pain and irritation during intercourse or exercise, etc., then this operation is mandatory. We would therefore say that Labiaplasty combines functionality with aesthetics.
Tell us a bit about the procedure followed during Labiaplasty.
The operation takes place with local anesthesia alone or with local anesthesia and inebriation. The procedure requires approximately 2 hours. No hospitalization is required, and the patient can go back home on the same day.
- Does the operation leave scars?
No. Older techniques had the disadvantage of using surgical instruments, while modern procedures – in order to reach better results – are mostly based on laser technique (Ellman Surgitron). This means that sensibility remains intact in the area, and women can return to their everyday activities on the same day.
- When can the woman have sex again?
Sexual intercourse is ill advised for seven to ten days. Apart from that, the mild swelling lasts only for two to three days.
- Which are the advantages of Labiaplasty?
Undoubtedly, the most important advantage is that women are relieved of the pain, irritation and infections that she had been dealing with in the past. Overall, the procedure helps women recover their confidence, change their everyday life, as well as improve their sex life. They return immediately to their everyday activities, while the most important advantage is that the results are permanent.
- Do you consider that Labiaplasty in Greece is still taboo and how do you believe it can be overcome?
A few years ago, all plastic surgery was taboo and no one admitted that they had gotten a nose job or botox! However, over the years this has changed and it now goes without saying that if we are uncomfortable with some aspect of our appearance, we have to improve it.
The same is true with Labiaplasty, which is necessary for the modern woman who presents any deformity, precisely because it happens for functional, as well as for aesthetic reasons. I therefore believe that in time, the Labiaplasty taboo will continue to diminish.