Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications, experience, or professional qualifications of anyone posting on Mumsnet Talk and cannot be held responsible for any advice given on the site. If you have any serious medical concerns we would urge you to consult your GP.

Labia reduction surgery

(19 Posts)
MysticMugBug Wed 13-Mar-13 20:07:35

can someone help me decide how best to approach the doctors with this.
I have the same problem: large labia that is inconvenient and gets trapped in clothing and can be embarassing.
My main gripe is the fact that it can get sore and trapped, but has a little to do with aesthetics.
I have asked if they can do anything for me at my previous docs before and they said that it was a little bit bigger than average, but within normal range.
Therefore, they didn't refer me further for an op due to NHS cuts etc.
I appreciate there are greater abnormalities and illnesses that need treating more than mine, but i would like to try again (different docs) to ask them to refer me and get my labia reduced.
Has anyone got any strategies or ideas about what i could say to make it more likely for them to consider my case?
Thanks x

digerd Sat 09-Feb-13 17:34:56

OP
Just read your last post, and that is good as a GA can up to 24 hours afterwards cause sudden unconsciousness again. Not that it ever happened to me. But you will need help with the little ones anyway as bound to feel sore. I should imagine crossing your legs will be painful until all is healed and urinating.
Best wishes for the result and your recovery.
Still think you are very brave.

ReallyLoveWine Wed 06-Feb-13 18:14:42

Thanks digerd, and for your comments re the procedure. DH has now confirmed he will be around day after op, so that will help lots as not sure how much pain I will be in or how woozy after GA. Have had a GA before but it was years ago before kids and responsibilities! Should hopefully only have 1 day on my own with kids a couple of days after op then husband taking week off work so should give me some time to recover.

digerd Tue 05-Feb-13 13:29:58

Your DH should really be home with you the day after a GA. Especially with the 2 little ones to look after.
Good Luck

ReallyLoveWine Mon 04-Feb-13 21:05:57

Thanks so much for all the comments. I have not posted on MN before and was not sure if anyone would respond!

Thanks particularly to confusteling - this is all so helpful, I am going to print off your response and use it for reference next week. I am really glad it worked out for you and that you feel it has changed your life. I hope it will do the same for me. I am more aware of the problem than ever as the day of the operation gets closer - can't wait to just get it done.

BTW my doctor has already said it will be a GA, but the plan is for it still to be day case, providing all goes well. Slight problem I have is that I am a SAHM and have two children aged 4 and 3 to look after. Hopefully my husband will be there the day after to look after the kids but after that I am on my own. I am hoping that I won't be too incapacitated or else there is going to be a lot of lying on the sofa watching DVDs!

confusteling Thu 31-Jan-13 14:18:13

I must admit though that if they give you the option, I would ask for a GA - whilst the sedation was OK, there was a lot of faffing before the spinal .. Spent 40 minutes with my legs in stirrups, but fully wide awake waiting to go through a full IVbag before they could safely do the spinal. They were friendly and we chatted about golf, cars etc but there were a lot of people there and I was acutely aware of my semi nude ness! If you have a GA you will still be nude from the waist down but you won't be so aware of it, and you won't be lying around for 40 minutes waiting for things to get started!

confusteling Thu 31-Jan-13 10:10:19

OK have more time than I thought:

I was given the op on the grounds of medical issues resulting from them being far too big; the outer layers of skin were all damaged and thinned and just horrible. They kept falling out of my knickers, rubbing against clothing and blistering etc. If stretched they touched my inner thighs..

Op was called a bilateral labioplasty plus clitoral hood reduction..

I was given a spinal anaesthetic (an injection in the back, like an epidural but not quite) which numbed me from the belly button down. I was then given an injection of stuff in my hand to make me relaxed and sleepy but not unconscious, I was fully awake the entire time. The drugs did have the effect of making me forget the whole procedure from the moment they were injected - I remember saying I was lovely and cosy, then putting my head back; the next thing I vividly remember was the surgeon telling me she was on the last stitch.

I was given local anaesthetic injections afterwards to help with pain relief. I had around 25 stitches in a ring round my labia and through my clitoral hood.

There wasn't any heavy bleeding, I had a period at the time and there was nothing more than the usual amount for a period. I did get given huge maternity pads to wear but it wasn't really necessary and by 9am the next day I switched to normal pads. I was worried about bleeding on the bed but that only happened once or twice, and the sheets were changed pretty much within minutes.

Pain relief wore off by 4 and at that time I was given dihydrocodeine to help, with the offer of speaking to the ward doctor if I felt I wasn't getting any relief. The first night was a shock in terms of swelling/pain levels but it got gradually better after that.

I did have to stay in one night due to the spinal but I was discharged by 11am the next day - my mum had to pick me up.

I did spend the first week at my mum's, and was pretty much bedridden - my vulva was very swollen and I couldn't put my legs together. I slept in a starfish shape.. I was advised to have towel time for about ten minutes every 3 hours or so (i.e. no pants, no trousers, airing the stitches off) and the nurses said rubbing in germolene/savlon might help a bit. I was on regular painkillers and was given tramadol incase I needed it - I never did. I didn't bleed much beyond the first couple of days, although the stitches did weep so wearing a pad helped. It was itchy but nothing I couldn't bear and putting a cold facecloth on or a bag of frozen peas helped.

Peeing was never a problem in terms of stinging - I just took an old sports cap bottle, filled it with lukewarm salty water and poured it on myself as I went, and then patted dry with a facecloth.

I had to have daily checkups - the first day, a GP and nurse came to my house, thereafter I saw the nurse at the surgery for a week just to check I was OK.

Within a week the swelling had gone right down and I was able to walk reasonably well. With that I was also able to see the results and I actually cried, I was so amazed - I now have a "slit" and everything is tucked inside, and no longer sore. I can wear proper underwear (used to be restricted to huge granny pants!) and nothing falls out. All the damaged tissue has gone. I still can't quite believe it's mine to be honest, as I'm so used to it looking so ugly and being so sore!

I've never felt that I've lost functioning (although I was warned of that), I still have normal sensation etc. If anything the reduction in pain has made everything feel a lot nicer.

Hospital and GP have both had a look since and have said it just looks "beautiful" and that they'd not have known it was operated on - it just looks like it was made that way. There's some very mild scarring but nothing you can really see unless you go looking with a microscope tbh.

Good luck, it's by no means an easy surgery but it's so very, very worth it to solve any discomfort you might be having. It's changed my life (sad, but true)!

digerd Thu 31-Jan-13 10:04:51

opps "occurred"

LedaOfSparta Thu 31-Jan-13 10:04:50

* or SHE (was basing this on the gynae surgeons I know) doesn't mean to..

digerd Thu 31-Jan-13 10:02:56

When I was much younger, it suddenly occured to me that I didn't know where my wee came from- even wondered if it came from my clitoris like a man's penis. But no there was no hole there, so searched and found a teeny weeny hole in between the lower Labia just above vag entrance. I had to open the inner lips to find it.

LedaOfSparta Thu 31-Jan-13 10:02:53

Hi, I've seen this op often at work. It's quite a short procedure and your surgeon is not going to cut anything he doesn't intend to!

The ladies I see don't seem to have a huge amount of postop discomfort either.

You've never looked at your own labia?? confused

HeyHoHereWeGo Thu 31-Jan-13 09:48:52

OP shouldn't you look at the "before" so that you know the difference?
And you will nedd to be looking at the "after" to check for wound healing, signs of infection etc.
Is there a reason why you haven't ever looked?

confusteling Thu 31-Jan-13 09:45:29

Just marking place, heading off out but will reply shortly. I had this done Oct 2011 and kept a basic diary so will go look it up for you x

digerd Thu 31-Jan-13 09:12:04

I too have had physical problems, and had sores occasionally, but usually only inconveniences.
SIL and I were talking about it, but of course we didn't show each other our Labia . Later she told me that she had looked with a mirror < had to hoik her big tummy up to see> and said hers was a neat slit with no inner lips protruding/hanging down - in effect looking like it did as a child and causing her no problems.

ReallyLoveWine Wed 30-Jan-13 21:04:12

'Hoping', not 'going'!! Oops.

ReallyLoveWine Wed 30-Jan-13 21:03:25

Thank you. I have never really looked at mine so its not so much an aesthetic thing but still hoping they might look better than they do at the moment! But for me really it is about the discomfort I feel on a daily basis. I can't wait to be able to move around freely without constantly being aware of them. Going the surgeon manages to avoid my clitoris though, that would be horrific!

digerd Wed 30-Jan-13 20:26:05

I saw one op on a documentary. But don't remember actually looking too closely as I was imagining the pain she would feel afterwards. All I remember is seeing her before and after, and thinking hers before was much more attractive than mine. And worrying about the surgeon knicking her clitoris with his scissors which would have been excruciating for her, but he didn't.
I think you are being very brave and hope you get the Labia just as you want them to be.
Good Luck

ReallyLoveWine Wed 30-Jan-13 19:23:41

I am booked in to get my lady bits sorted out in a couple of weeks. I am feeling excited about sorting out a problem that has bothered me for 20 years, but a bit nervous too. Has anyone had it done, or know of anyone who has? Any advice/thoughts to offer? Thanks

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now