Labial reduction/refashioning

Labial reduction/refashioning is a surgical procedure that is carried out when the inner lips of the vagina become oversized.

What is labial reduction/refashioning?

Labial reduction/refashioning is a surgical procedure that is carried out when the inner lips of the vagina become oversized. When this happens, it can lead to some discomfort – including irritation when exercising, having sex or wearing tight clothing. Some women are also embarrassed by the appearance of large vaginal lips, so choose to have labial reduction/refashioning to rectify the issue.

A labial reduction/refashioning operation is a simple surgery that cuts away excess skin on the vaginal inner lips, resulting in a normal appearance.


Am I a good candidate for labial reduction/refashioning?

You are a good candidate for labial reduction/refashioning if oversized vaginal lips are causing you embarrassment or discomfort. If you are sure that your excess skin is not a result of temporary inflammation or swelling, then you may be suitable for surgery. You will need to talk to a doctor or surgeon to determine the problem and therefore determine the best cause of action. However, if it's a persistent problem that is causing you physical or mental grief, labial reduction/refashioning could offer an effective solution.

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How does labial reduction/refashioning work?

There are two different types of labial reduction/refashioning surgery. The first approach is to just remove the excess skin completely. However, this can result in an unnatural appearance. The second, and in most cases, the better approach is to reconstruct the area around the labia. This is a slightly more complex surgical procedure, but it will result in a natural look afterwards. Most people, as a result, prefer the second option.

The operation is usually performed under general anaesthetic, which means you are unconscious throughout the procedure. Occasionally it is done under local anaesthetic, meaning that you will remain conscious, but will not feel any pain. The surgery takes around one to two hours.


Recovery from labial reduction/refashioning

Labial reduction/refashioning is a form of surgery, so some downtime is required. You will not normally be required to stay in hospital overnight following your procedure. However, you will need to rest at home, and refrain from activities such as sexual intercourse for around six weeks.

There is no need to return to the hospital; all stitches to the labia are done using a dissolvable solution, so will disappear naturally as the skin heals. As with all surgical procedures, if you experience any prolonged pain or discomfort following your labial reduction/refashioning, you should contact your doctor or surgeon. The majority of women find labial reduction/refashioning to be an effective treatment for oversized vaginal lips, and a moderate form of surgery. Pain following the procedure is common, but can be relieved using over the counter pain killers.

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Cheryl Wood




Appointments Department
Spire Fylde Coast Hospital
St Walburgas road

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