Abnormally large or asymmetrical labia minora (inner lips) can cause significant concern in women who may consider themselves physically deformed and unattractive. When the labia minora protrudes past the labia majora it becomes a difficult to hide protrusion in the genital area. Women often become very self-conscious and avoid wearing tight pants and swimwear. Occasional insensitive remarks by their partner further compounds the problem. Large labia minora may cause considerable discomfort during intimacy and pose problems with hygiene.
Compression from prolonged sitting on a hard surface such as a bicycle seat, rubbing of the labia during exercising and friction from tight clothing can also cause sufficient irritation and pain. Abnormally large labia minora also known as labial hypertrophy is usually due to stretching of the labia during child birth. Occasionally labia hypertrophy is seen at a young age in women who have not gone through the process of child birth. This type is considered a normal variation of genital development. Since there is no standard for what is and is not normal. I consider a normal labia minora to be just about the same level as the labia majora (the outer lips) or even slightly more protruding.
Labia minora reduction or Labiaplasty is a procedure designed to reduce the size and correct any asymmetry of the inner lips. The procedure is done under general anesthesia and the recovery period is approximately 7 days. Suturing is performed with absorbable sutures under the skin. Therefore, there are no stitches to be removed. Surgery is best performed after the monthly menstruation. Scarring is minimal if any. Post surgical pain is minimal and well controlled with medication. Sexual activity and sports should be avoided for 6 weeks.
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