There are two primary techniques that plastic surgeons use for labiaplasty: the trim technique and the wedge technique.
The Trim Labiaplasty Technique
What it is: The trim technique is exactly what it sounds like: an approach whereby the excess tissue at the edges of the labia minora are cut away—“trimmed” to a more desirable shape and size. Within this technique, there are two options available: the classic trim technique (performed with traditional surgical instruments) and the laser labiaplasty technique.
When it’s used: I recommend the trim technique to patients whose labias have uneven or discolored outer edges. I also recommend it to patients coming in for combination labiaplasty and clitoral hood reduction, because one incision can be used to complete both procedures at once.
Pros and Cons: The trim technique can be a very effective way of reshaping and renewing the labia minora. However, when performed by an inexperienced surgeon, this method can lead to loss of sensation, stiffness, and discomfort at the incision. Laser labiaplasty takes less time and causes less bleeding than the traditional trim technique, but it also tends to create less natural-looking results. Laser labiaplasty can also lead to tissue and nerve ending damage.
The Wedge Labiaplasty Technique
What it is: The wedge labiaplasty technique involves removing a wedge-shaped section of tissue from the middle third of the labia and then stitching the top and bottom sections of the labia back together.
When it’s used: I recommend the wedge technique to patients whose labias are asymmetrical or have an excess of tissue (and do not have issues along the labial edge)
Pros and Cons: This technique preserves the labial edge (making for more natural-looking results), and since the incision is an interior one, less stress is placed on the stitches as the patients heal, which reduces the potential for post-surgical complications. However, if the closure breaks down—which sometimes happens—it can cause a gap in the labia that will have to be addressed through a second surgery.
Ultimately, as you can see, the labiaplasty technique you choose should be selected based on both your unique anatomy and your desired results. As a plastic surgeon who performs an average of two to three labiaplasties per week, I have the knowledge to help you choose the technique that’s right for you—and the experience and skill to get you the fantastic results you deserve. Give us a call today at the San Francisco Plastic Surgery & Laser Center and set up a consultation to learn more!