To ask for Labiaplasty experiences?(27 Posts)
I don't want to say too much because of the Daily fail and I have NC for this post.
I am considering this operation due to pain and discomfort plus tissue damage caused by being longer than average, not because I want to look 'prettier' etc down there. This isn't a barbie doll wannabe, but I want to be pain free.
There are lots of stories online but its hard to discern UK experiences from the Gyn carried out operations in America etc so its really hard to gauge the pro's and cons. I won't give detail but I am very much aware that someone will always be the tiny percent where things go wrong so I have that to weigh up too.
Would really appreciate any experiences or to hear from people who work in this field and see results? I promise I am not after sordid details!
I had a non cosmetic labiaplasty.
It was fine. Some pain when weeing for the first couple of weeks but nothing like the pain I was in before getting it done.
I had one in 2011. Very, very painful and traumatic. Solved the pain I had before (which was excruciating) but I was still young - only just twenty- given no pain relief beyond paracetomal despite 35 stitches (extensive wedge resection plus clitoral hood reduction). Was done on NHS who willingly admitted they had very little experience and the nurses were taken aback at swelling and after effects (couldn't walk for a week).
But it worked to solve the damage, I can wear trousers and most knickers now without needing to readjust every few minutes. It needed doing, my GP was concerned what would happen in future.
They told me after in hindsight I should have been seen on a gynae ward , given a PCA and catheter - I was on a tiny day surgery unit on a trolley with not even a buzzer.
So if you do go for it I would make sure they look after you well - and be prepared to fight for it. I still get 'oh you've a designer vagina?' when I get internals now... It did make a difference to the long term problems though.
Go for it if you want OP, but be careful you don't have TOO much taken off!!!
I saw a programme several years back, where a woman had it done as she thought her labia was too big/long. And they took too much off!!!
What some people don't realise, is that the labia is there to 'funnel' the urine when you pee, and with the labia almost all gone, the pee went everywhere! All over the loo seat, all down the inside of her thighs, and over her underpants.
And there was no putting it back!
Good luck with whatever you decide to do. And I hope it goes well, and you are happy.
I had it when I was twenty for medical reasons. You have to remember that it is erectile tissue, and the tissues either side of the scar swell during happy fun time, and the scar doesn't. It can ache a bit during and after special adult cuddles.
Also, it is not a clean area. I had a fairly major infection that involved me going into the surgeon's rooms at 7am for weeks, having it all swabbed out with iodine. Very dignified.
Long-term, I am alive (It was Paget's disease) 26 years later and the important bits are still in working order (thank gawd!).
Sorry for such a late reply, I forgot my log in!
Thank you all for your experiences, it amazes me how different peoples recoveries are.
I will be having a wedge with some reduction to the hood also as I have hypertrophy there too, that bit has never bothered me but my surgeon said if we don't tidy that bit too it will leave an odd look and its likely I would then want to sort that out. She is also very clear I won't achieve a completely tucked in look as I am quite long and she refuses to take that much away which is fine with me. When I raised the issue she stated that many women ask for the procedure and she turns them away as they don't need it as they are within normal parameters and was firm she would do the same with me if that was the case. She examined me and I think was a little surprised as I downplayed the issues I guess. Since then I notice how often I adjust how I am sitting, 3 times during a hair trim that took 15 minutes due to getting sore! I realise when I am alone in the office I sit with my legs spread to relieve the discomfort. Just the every day things I don't even notice myself doing, its a constant thing!
If anyone does come back to this, my biggest fear is loss of sensation, to finally get the extra bits taken away so I am comfortable being touched (I find sometimes they get in the way or caught up even in foreplay and it makes me nervous to get hurt) then lose my ability to orgasm. Has anyone had this? I have researched loads but there is one very unfortunate lady who posts a lot on the forums etc across the web, who has lost her sensation completely but as she appears on so many places you end up reading repeatedly of her terrible experience and it colours the negatives vs positives, if that makes any sense?
My surgeon has said she has never had a single patient lose sensation, I wonder if this might be as she takes as little away as possible, whereas ladies who I read who have had issues seem to have had the entire labia removed?
No loss of sensation here. Some stingy bits where the stitches were (scar tissue) but definitely no loss of feeling, I can still orgasm. It actually got easier as less 'mess' in the way, iyswim.
I can sympathise on adjusting and sitting, I couldn't sit still at school as as a teen it was horrendous. My lowest moment I remember going to GP reception in tears, red raw and unable to walk. Horrible
I hope this doesn't sound prurient, but what is it that causes so much pain?
Can't speak for OP but think its because you end up sort of sitting on the tissue and it cuts blood supply. I used to rub on underwear, trousers etc and couldn't wear skirts either as they'd slip out over the sides and rub like hell. They'd fall out over knicker line and get irritated/bleed. Or get hair tangled round them too (like what happens with a wee baby's toe). I got 'adhered' to a pair of knickers once through a tiny hole and had to have them cut off with nail scissors. That was hell., and gynae tried to convince me that happens regularly to most women!!
I have to say I am worried about the way your surgeon is so militant on what she will and will not do. That would worry me.
There are two main choices in this operation; the trim method (also known as the Barbie) and the wedge. Many surgeons prefer one or the other but I would want to go with a surgeon who actually did both and listened to my issues and did not only do what they think is 'socially acceptable'. Many of the good surgeons will listen to what a patient wants and discuss the pros and cons of the options and then agree on a final method that suits what the patient wants but is also practical.
There is a website in the USA called Real Self and they have Q&A's about this with Doctors who specialise in this field. I would read there as there are real live experiences being discussed and it really opens your eyes to the various methods and views.
I want one of these and there is no way I'd go for a wedge, I'd want the trim method.
Trim method is not an option in every case though.
OPs surgeon sounds very sensible, much rather she leave a little extra than cut the entire thing off which is what a lot of teenage girls seem to thing is what they're supposed to have. She sounds like she is quite strict about doing it for medical other than cosmetic reasons- thats the kind surgeon I'd be looking for not someone promising you a porn star barbie vag.
Trim method is not an option in every case though.
But that is part of the consultation though, to have the conversation about what the patient wants and what can actually be achieved due to their anatomy etc. Not to have a surgeon who sneers and / or looks down from her high horse at anyone who wants something that she thinks is not acceptable.
I had this done 18 months ago. Had the trim method and
Had the trim method. Surgeon also wanted to some reduction of the clitoral hood that I declined. Still wanted to look like myself but with less at the back if you see what I mean. Be prepared for extreme swelling afterwards and quite a lot of pain. I also lost sensation which, to be honest, I'd only say has fully returned within the last month or two (after over a year). I'm glad I've had it done though but you do need to be fully prepared for afterwards.
Rich, was it a complete loss of sensation? Thank you for the warning regarding recovery.
My surgeon has been fantastic, whilst I understand some concerns if people feel she hasn't given a consultation rather than a directive my previous post may have been unclear. I really don't want the trim method for various reasons but mainly as I don't want the scar running all the way down. I don't 'have to have' any work done to the hood, but whilst I have no pain etc in that area it is hypertrophic and removing a little at the same time from the sides (not near the business part) would be simpler to do whilst carrying out the labiaplasty rather than ending with a result I hate as it looks odd. Its definitely worth being part of the consideration and I believe this is why she raised it. There is no cost implication either way.
I actually prefer that she outlined what her comfort zone for operating is, I have seen some awful results where the surgeon has operated on labia that are within limits that would not be considered abnormal or hypertrophic where almost the entire area has been removed. I really don't want this and respect a surgeon who stated she wouldn't be willing to do this right at the very start of the meeting. I run a business and I tell customers we won't carry out areas of a project that I don't feel are safe or worth their spending money on and I think the surgeon is just doing the same.
Olivia, can I ask why not the wedge, if not too personal? I have spent a lot of time on Real self too, its a brilliant site.
Should've, oh yes, the nail scissor removal, so painful, especially if you don't get to it in time and it swells.
Just to add, I'm not a young girl sadly. I'm a middle aged, peri-menopausal grumpy mare with 2 DC taller than me nearing adulthood. I never realised until now that the pain isn't normal and you can do something about it, I thought it was something all women had, especially after having children vaginally.
I've had it but mine was done as a repair after birth
I had thick scar tissue that made it incredibly painful down there
As soon as it was done, I felt so much better. Healing wasn't as bad either. I would liken it to healing after birth but less blood.
I actually thought that too. I remember looking in magazines at 12 where they (in 2003 so fairly modern times!) spoke about vulval anatomy and had a wee diagram saying you had two bigger lips and two smaller. I spent a year thinking my small ones must not have grown as they weren't there! It was a friend at that age when we got changed, who highlighted through hysterics that I had 'a weird dangly thing' , realised then not everyone had this annoying thing just hanging there.
Yes nail scissors was horrendous! I've never worn lacy underwear since funnily enough.
I actually saw a women's health physio today and we spoke a bit about the labiaplasty and my feelings (related she thinks to my PF being in spasm). She wants me to look in a mirror at it . My GP tried to get me to do that once ages ago much to my horror too...
Shouldnt, I have seen your responses on many of the labiaplasty threads on mums net going back a long while during my searches, just wanted to say a thank you as I see you have an awful lot going on yourself yet you take the time to chat and share this story with others. I hope all goes well with your recent visit regarding your ongoing issues.
It is amazing how others will point this out and joke about it, I have squirmed at people noticing a lady in a bikini on tv having a 'bulge' or a celeb rumour that they have a penis. Yet we see so much in the news these days that this surgery is rocketing in popularity amongst the young who feel abnormal and insecure. It really isn't something I would consider just for the 'look' alone, its a scary serious procedure with some awful possible issues if things do go wrong, but I can't lie and say I don't consider the final 'look' as unimportant.
The idea of being happy to be touched down there and receive oral sex (Intimacy can be a real mix of pleasure and pain, its so easy for a well intentioned touch to actually hurt and have you snapping your knees shut or squirming up the bed for the wrong reasons) it gets into your brain, I find it so hard to relax when my husband touches me it must be hard on him too. The idea of being relaxed, pain free and confident plus not worrying about how it looks or feels to him. Its such a mix of practicality and vanity.
All of the reporting I have seen in my research picks up on the cosmetic reasons, they barely mention the percentage of us who are suffering daily pain, infections, problems with urine flow etc, you feel that you have to justify it purely on that basis, to defend yourself against the eye brow raising and designer vagina quotes.
Currently I am having days where I am totally doing it, and others I want to curl up and hide from even the idea, unfortunately I have been in the tiny percentage of people who have had a bad outcome with (non cosmetic or plastic) surgery so I have a heightened awareness that someone has to be in that percent and it can be me, rather than the slightly easier going, notion that its a tiny percent and not likely to be me I had when younger. I don't know if that makes sense?
Ohhhthepain - I hope you don't mind me asking who your surgeon is. You mention a woman. I've been looking into it and the only woman I found (even though it's been a while since I researched it - probably years) was someone with the initials AK. I've name changed for this. I can PM you the name of the person I was thinking of going to if you don't mind. I'm interested in any names or recommendations of women that you may have.
Hi Lizzie, I'll PM you, mine is different initials.
I got the message Ohhhthepain and have sent the name I have to you. Thanks again.
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