Cosmetic gynecology aims to make improvements to either the physical appearance or function of the vagina and labia; in many cases, both goals are accomplished simultaneously. The results of cosmetic gynecology can improve the enjoyment of sexual activities, while also rejuvenating the genitals to make the body appear younger or more aesthetically pleasing.
A vaginoplasty procedure focuses on reducing the width of the vagina. Although naturally designed to stretch during sex and childbirth, the tissues of the vagina can lose elasticity over time, particularly following multiple childbirths. This permanent stretching can sometimes affect a woman’s enjoyment during sex. During a vaginoplasty, a cosmetic surgeon may use techniques such as tightening the perineal muscles or making repairs to the rear vaginal wall, reducing the overall width of the vagina and “tightening” the tissues. While vaginoplasty is typically sought as a cosmetic procedure, it can also be used as a reconstructive procedure to address birth defects or tissue injuries that may have occurred during childbirth.
Labiaplasty addresses the size and shape of the labia, or the folds of skin that frame the opening of the vagina. There is naturally a significant amount of variation in the appearance of the labia from woman to woman, and normal asymmetries often occur. Many women seek this procedure because they have a natural excess of skin that may either cause discomfort when wearing tight-fitting clothing or make sex and intimacy difficult. Thus, a labiaplasty procedure may remove excess skin from both sides of the labia to reduce overall size, or from only one side to correct an asymmetry.
Perineoplasty: This procedure is to lift or support the region between the vagina and the rectum which is called the perineum. This is the region where episiotomies are cut and where tears during childbirth are most common. The surgery is designed to make the perineum appear normal by excising excess skin, loose skin tags, and suturing the underlying muscles or the perineal body closer together to give a snugger feeling in the introitus or vaginal opening.
Majora: This procedure is designed to reduce the broader outer lips of the vulva which can be enlarged with excess skin and tissue. The labia majora may be enlarged secondary to childbirth, or due to aging. Many women also find quite a large and droopy labia majora after major weight loss particularly after bariatric surgery. This enlargement can cause an embarrassing bulge in pants, swimsuits, or leotard. It can also increase the discomfort of sweating in the vulva.
Clitoral hood reduction: This procedure is designed to aesthetically remove the excess skin on the sides of the clitoris which causes the clitoris to look enlarged or uneven. Factors such as genetics, estrogen, and testosterone exposure can make significant changes in the way the clitoral area looks. A reduction of the labia itself may result in the appearance of a relatively larger clitoral area since the excess labia have been removed drawing the eyes to the clitoral region.
Dr. Pezzella is fellowship trained in Aesthetic Vulvovaginal Surgery (AVS)and is experienced in performing these cosmetic procedures to meet the needs for her patients. Every patient’s needs and desired outcomes are different and she tailors her procedure approach to match.
Cosmetic Gynecology includes the tightening and improving of the aesthetic appearance of the vagina. This is different from reconstructive surgeries that aim to improve the function and health. If this is the desired patient outcome you are looking for, contact us today at Southern Urogynecology to learn more about how we can help.