What is Labiaplasty?

What can I expect from labiaplasty surgery? What changes are realistically achievable? What is recovery like?

Doctor Answers 21

What is a Labiaplasty

Labiaplasty is a procedure to help improve the aesthetic appearance of the external genitalia. This area is typically comprised of the clitoral hood, labia majora, and labia minora. A labiaplasty refers to improvement in the size and appearance of the labia minora, which can become darkened, enlarged, and sagging from pregnancy or a number of other reasons. A labiaplasty can remove the darkened folds and excess labia minora to help create a more symmetric cleaner appearance of your external genitalia. When we consult with patients for labiaplasty in our Jacksonville plastic surgery practice, we ask patients to demonstrate the specifics of what they desire to be improved. We then create a customized surgical plan to help them achieve the look and feel of what they hope to achieve with labiaplasty surgery. 

Jacksonville Plastic Surgeon
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Results of Labiaplasty

When referring to labiaplasty, I am discussing labia minora reductions.

Our first priority is to have a woman express her desires and aesthetic as well as her functional goals in the course of the intial consultation.

We ask patients to show us their areas of concern by using a mirror with a Q-tip as a pointer, to indicate their desired results.

I then review the surgical options, explain any particular aspects which cannot be performed, and then discuss reasonable expectations.

Labia are rarely symmetric. Our overall goal in treating asymmetry is to diminish the disparity between the two sides. Not all aspects of the labia can be corrected to achieve symmetry, this includes qualities such as size, shape, color, texture, thickness, projection, etc.

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 54 reviews

Results of labiaplasty are specific to the individual anatomy of a patient's labia minora

The labia minora and labia majora comprise the external anatomy of the female genital area.

In some cases, the labia minora may be large and stretched as a result of normal development, labor, or age. In this case, a labiaplasty is performed to reduce the size of the labia in order to acheive a more suitable shape and dimension of this very important part of a female body.

There are three important goals to surgery:

  • Maintaining sensitivity in the area
  • Acheiving beautiful aesthetic form
  • Reducing the labia minora without causing the function of the labia minora to diminish, namely, keeping the vagina and introitus moist.

For questions about the procedure, speak to a board certified plastic surgeon.

Raffy Karamanoukian, MD, FACS
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 57 reviews


It is important to discuss these questions with your provider and find a board certified plastic surgeon.

In my San Francisco area practice we perform labiaplasties typically under local anesthesia and conscious sedation. The procedure is relatively short and patients have little post-operative discomfort.

There are dissolving sutures left in place and the incisions heal quite quickly. Patients typically are back to their routine (including sexual intercourse) at 3-4 weeks.

I hope this helps.

You should expect to look better with very little discomfort

Labiaplasty is surgery on the labia minora (inner lips) and/or labia majora (outer lips). This surgery helps reduce the size and improve the appearance of the labia. It also can remove excess skin from around your clitoris which may help with sexual satisfaction. In addition to this, a vaginoplasty can be done where the entrance to the vagina is tightened. Adjunct procedures can be added such as g-spot injections to help achieve orgasm.

Because so much of sexual satisfaction is tied up in how we feel about ourselves and our bodies, this surgery not only makes you look better, but also feel better about your body.

Patients in my practice say that the recovery is easy with very little pain. People are back to work in two days without difficulty.

In my practice, we work with a Gynecological surgeon to address other issues as well, such as stress incontinence and vaginal prolapse.

All this is done in our office facility, which is AAAASF approved.

Kari L. Colen, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 3 reviews

Labiaplasty Explanation and Video

Vaginal Rejuvenation has become a hot topic over the past ten years or so as grooming habits have changed. With the majority of women shaving, waxing or doing some type of grooming they have become more aware of the appearance of their vaginal area.

The term vaginal rejuvenation is a broad term that can be used to encompass several procedures with the overall goal of improving the appearance of the vaginal area.

The most common method for rejuvenation is trimming the labia minora (inner lips) this will remove the excess skin that may hang below the vagina.

The second method is fat grafting to the labia majora (outer lips) this will add volume to the area and improve the deflated appearance that women can have after having children or after weight loss.

The two methods can be done together to give the patient the best overall aesthetic result.

The cost depends on which of these procedures is performed and whether the procedure is performed under local anesthesia or with some type of anesthesia.

I would recommend that you consult your board certified plastic surgeon so that you can be evaluated and discuss your options.


A labiaplasty reduces the size of the labia minor. It generally does not reduce the size of the labia majora or the clittoral hood.

Labiaplasty- what to expect

Labiaplasty takes about two hours and is done using local or general anesthesia. You can expect to reduce the size or reduce the prominence of labia minora.  Many women want to have a labiaplasty for cosmetic (appearance) reasons alone.  However others wish to improve symptoms of chaffing, chronic wetness, drying or irritation caused by excessively long or prominent labia minora and excessive skin present in the clitoral hood.

The goal is to reduce the size of the labia minora (the inner lips) and clitoral hood so they no longer extend below the level of the labia majora (the outer or larger labia).  Symptoms which are related to prominent or long labia majora- such as chaffing or skin irritation should resolve.

There should be minimal discomfort after your labiaplasty.

Recovery usually is brief- about a week off from work, about two months off from strenuous exercise and avoiding intercourse or placing anything inside the vagina(i.e. tampon use) during those months




Steven Yarinsky, MD
Albany Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 6 reviews

Description of a Labiaplasty

Labiaplasty is plastic surgery on the labia, it can be performed alone or with vaginoplasty. Surgery can be performed on the labia major (the larger, outer vaginal lips), or the labia minor (the smaller, inner vaginal lips.) Labiaplasty changes the size or shape of the labia, typically correcting the asymmetry or making them smaller. I would advise you to consult with a board certified plastic surgery for further discuss your individual options.

Todd Ginestra, MD (in memoriam)
Clermont Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 6 reviews

What is a Labiaplasty?

The term "labiaplasty" actually covers three areas of the external female genitalia-correction of the labia minora, the labia majora, and the clitoral hood.  Some women desire or need correction of all three of these areas and others need to address only one or two of the areas.  An consultation with an examination is needed to make the correct decision.

Most common is a reduction of the labia minora-the thinner, inner tissues around the vaginal opening-that can be stretched or enlarged from childbearing or other causes.  Some women naturally have enlarged labia minora, some just on one side and not the other.  The reduction removes the excess tissue and improves symmerty between the right and left sides.

The labiaplasty on the labia majora often addresses the excess fullness of the outer labia either with liposuction or with excision of the extra skin and tissues.

Treatment of the clitoral hood is performed when the tissues sag or hang too far over the clitoris.  Care must be taken to not remove too much tissue and expose the very sensitive tissue of the clitoris to irritation from clothing or activity.

Recovery varies depending on the techniques required but most patients can return to desk activities in less than a week.  Exercise and intimate activities do require a longer recovery time.

Please obtain a consultation or more if needed before proceeding.  Hope this helps.

Herluf G. Lund, Jr, MD
Saint Louis Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 25 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.