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Labiaplasty: What could go wrong?

Article-Labiaplasty: What could go wrong?

A spike in demand for labiaplasty surgery has brought with it concerns about the safety and effectiveness of female aesthetic genital procedures.

In order to describe the type and frequency of complications that can arise from such procedures, a team of researchers led by Frank Lista, M.D., founder and medical director of the Plastic Surgery Clinic, Toronto, undertook a retrospective chart review of 113 patients who had primary aesthetic labia minora reduction surgery between August 2007 and April 2014. The review focused on demographic, procedural and outcome data.

Labiaplasty Complications


Labiaplasty Complications

Of the 113 patients reviewed, 29 had labiaplasty performed in combination with another procedure. Fifteen of these patients reported transient symptoms such as swelling, bruising and pain. One patient experienced bleeding and four required revision surgery. All revisions were performed to excise further tissue to address persistent redundancy or asymmetry. No major complications were reported.

Related: Safety of vaginal and plastic surgery combination procedures

“In our experience, aesthetic surgery of the labia minora using an edge-excision technique has a very low complication rate and provides satisfactory aesthetic outcomes for our patients,” the authors write. “More studies examining the impact of labiaplasty on a woman’s self-image and quality of life would add to our understanding of the motivations and expectations of women undergoing this aesthetic surgery [and] allow us to help our patients make well-informed decisions.”

The study appears in the Aesthetic Surgery Journal and is one of the first to be published in the journal’s new Genital Rejuvenation section. ASJ Editor-in-Chief Foad Nahai, M.D., announced that Duxbury, Mass., plastic surgeon Christine Hamori, M.D., will serve as section editor. “Dr. Hamori is an experienced and well-published expert in this field,” Dr. Nahai writes in ASJ.

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