One labia bigger. Is this abnormal? (photos)
Doctor Answers 19
Thank you for your question. Many variances for Labia are normal and changes in their appearance are common after puberty and again after childbearing. Asymmetry is also very common.
If the appearance of your Labia bothers you or you find them physically uncomfortable, you would be like many other women who see a Plastic Surgeon to improve these issues with a Labiaplasty. I recommend that you book a consultation with a board certified Plastic Surgeon and discuss your options.
All the best
The bottom line is - there is an enormous range of "normal" labias. If you don't have any physical problems and your primary care doctor/gynecologist feels everything is normal on examination - don't worry! Surgery is only an option for women who understand the risks and want to change the way they look because they feel that they will be more comfortable or confident if some of the tissue is removed.
Good luck and thanks for the question!
Dr. Michelle Spring
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there is often a normal amount of asymmetry. Treatment depends upon your concerns
this can improve your self esteem and confidence
Labia: Is It Abnormal for One Side to Be Bigger?
Of the other patients in which I reduce both sides, many are significantly asymmetric.
Some women seek labiaplasty because they're self-conscious. If that's the case with you, look for a board certified plastic surgeon or gynecologist with good before-and-after photos of labiaplasty.
Click on the link below for more information on Labiaplasty.
One labia longer than other
I often jokingly tell my patients when they asked me this question, that their labia's are not identical twins. If the asymmetry of your labia's bothers you then you should have a consultation with a cosmetic gynecologist or plastic surgeon and consider undergoing a labiaplasty which would make your labia minora appear more similar and symmetrical.
Your labia minora are sisters, not twins
Labiaplasty for asymmetry
Labiaplasty, which most commonly involves surgical reduction of the labia minora (inner/thinner lips) but not infrequently trimming or tucking of the labia majora (outer/thicker lips), has become a relatively common procedure over the last ten and even more so last five years. Most commonly it is done under light sedation (aka twighlight sleep) with local anesthesia, in which case the patient should feel no pain during the operation. Whether the surgery is done using a laser, scalpel, or scissors does not really matter but what does matter is "symmetry". Symmetry is the most important aspect to the final aesthetic result. Most women, just like yourself, prefer to have as much of the darker pigmented edges removed as possible. Also, it's not how much tissue is removed but how much is left remaining because a certain amount is necessary to maintain proper form and function - typically ~10 mm or so of the dry part of the labia. To achieve these three most important elements, I have found that the "Trim Method" satisfies best. It is extremely important to consult with a board certified plastic surgeon that specializes in this operation (does at least 1 - 2 per week). It may cost you a bit more but it is this type of result you will want to live with for the rest of your life. Typical (all inclusive) fee at my office/surgery center is $4500.
Although there is no guarantee, women frequently do seek clitoral hood reduction (Hoodectomy) to improve exposure of the clitoris and hence better stimulation during sexual activity. By removing some of the excess &/or redundant skin concealing the clitoris, it becomes more readily exposed to sexual stimulation and hence a heightened sexual experience/orgasm is possible. Sometimes I recommend adding hoodectomy to labiaplasty to better harmonize the aesthetic outcome. Again, the key is seek consultation with a board certified plastic surgeon or gynecologist who performs this procedure regularly (>2-3 x/month) so that just the right amount of tissue is removed and just the right amount remains such that the clitoris is not constantly exposed and rubbing on clothing, etc... Typical fee for a hoodectomy is ~$3000 but reduced to about half that price if done along with a labiaplasty.
Now for recovery, because the labia tissue is so robust with blood supply it has an amazing ability to heal relatively quickly. Most patients are sore for 4-5 days before things start to get a lot better from there. Some patients can resume work before this time depending upon their occupation. No exercise for two weeks, no baths/jacuzzi or swimming for 3 weeks, and no sexual activity for typically 4 weeks. My patients are given an oral pain medication such as Vicodin or Percocet but icing the area for the first 48 hours and applying some custom made take-home topical local anesthetic cream seems to work the best. Glad to help.