Since 2011, the number of women having labiaplasty has skyrocketed by over 500%. Over the last several years, more details about the labiaplasty procedure have become widely available, showing the innovative technique is safe and often provides life-changing results.
However, up until now, relatively little research has been done regarding the specific motivations of the women seeking the procedure. In an extensive study, published in April’s Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Journal of the American Society of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeons, our own Dr. Heather Furnas gets to the bottom of what women want from vaginal rejuvenation techniques and why they come in for a labiaplasty.
Dr. Furnas’ recent research included 50 labiaplasty patients, all between the ages of 17 and 51. Her assessment covered a total of 11 physical and appearance-related symptoms associated with elongated labia and women’s overall health. Of the 50 women, 93% had bilateral elongation and irregularities. Dr. Furnas reports that 52% of the women became aware of their labia becoming increasingly elongated as they got older. In her research, nearly all labiaplasty patients experienced four or more physical and appearance-related symptoms.
Of the women Dr. Furnas followed, more than half complained of tugging and painful pulling of the excess skin during intercourse. Other physical issues included discomfort in tight pants, a twisting of the labia, and a visible “bulge” in yoga pants. More than 40% relayed that their labia could be exposed in their swimwear. Most patients reported making restrictive clothing choices due to excessive labia tissue.
Physical symptoms were not the only concern brought to light during Dr. Furnas’ investigation. Almost all of the participants expressed feeling diminished confidence levels during intimate situations. Over 50% felt they were less attractive to their partner. Dr. Furnas recognized this negative impact on self-esteem and intimacy was of special concern.
Five Common Reasons Women Request Labiaplasty:
- Discomfort under tight clothing
- Irritation with exercise and movement
- Embarrassment when labia is visible through clothing
- Pain during intercourse
- Interference in sexual pleasure
After completing her study, Dr. Furnas concludes that most labiaplasty patients experience both physical and appearance-related symptoms, including a range of avoidance and safety-seeking behaviors. Understanding this patient perspective is crucial for doctors when assessing surgical outcomes. Furthermore, the better physicians understand labia symptomatology, the better they will be able to support patients seeking surgical relief.
For these reasons, women must take it into their own hands to seek out an experienced, skilled labiaplasty provider. In our practice, Dr. Furnas not only brings over 25 years of plastic surgery experience, she is one of the nation’s leading vaginal rejuvenation pioneers. Dr. Furnas is working to help doctors and patients alike become more educated on labiaplasty and vaginoplasty techniques, sharing an understanding of the many reasons women search out vaginal rejuvenation.
Contact us or call 707.537.2111 to find out more about the labiaplasty technique and see if the procedure could be right for you. With offices in Santa Rosa and Novato, we are conveniently located in beautiful northern California.