The escalating demand for labiaplasty and vaginal cosmetic surgery has some in the Canadian medical community concerned, as evidenced by a recent National Post article. The Society of Obstetricians and Gynecologists of Canada (SOGC) argues that such procedures have yet to establish they can improve a woman’s self esteem or enhance their sexual pleasure. While firm statistics on labiaplasty numbers are non-existent in our northern neighbor, some Canadian doctors say they perform up to 200 of these surgeries each year.
As the quest for the perfect body has prompted a surge in plastic surgery (breast augmentation and liposuction are more popular than ever), is labiaplasty creating a new standard for a “designer vagina” — one which emulates that of a porn star? Some physicians say yes, that in our Internet age with easy access to adult films, the pressure to have beautiful private parts is stronger than ever.
The SOGC states that unless medically necessary, they do not support elective vaginal cosmetic surgery, and they urge doctors to curtail misleading advertising in which they suggest such procedures can boost sexual satisfaction.
Operations range the gamut from your standard labiaplasty, where the outer and inner labia are trimmed down, to clitoral hood reductions.
Women who have extremely large, elongated or irregular labia often complain of irritation during sex, and feel embarrassed in tight-fitting clothes. These types of patients may seek the skill of plastic surgeon out of sheer physical discomfort, rather than purely aesthetic reasons.
Other vaginal surgeries that have invited criticism include a more invasive “rejuvenation” procedure, where the interior muscular walls are tightened, giving the patient the vagina of an 18 year-old girl. And for supposedly better and longer orgasms, some physicians offer G-shots – a quick, in-office treatment where filler is injected into the Grafenburg spot. Perfected by TV personality, Beverly Hills surgeon Dr. David Matlock, a G-spot injection costs around $1,800.
When it comes to patient satisfaction from vaginal cosmetic surgery, not all Canadian surgeons agree with the SOGC. Dr. Martin Jugenburg of the Toronto Cosmetic Surgery Institute confirms that many of his patients report a better sex life and improved self-confidence after labiaplasty, which has helped them both physically and emotionally.
Calgary surgeon Dr. Bruce Allan, an OBGYN who performs between 150-200 labiaplasties a year, agrees with some of SOCG’s concerns, but adds that the majority of his patients are “very well-adjusted people who have a part of their body they want changed.” He added, “It’s the same as a bald man who gets a hair transplant. It doesn’t mean every bald man needs to get a hair transplant, but the men who get it report they have better self confidence.”
Most plastic surgeons agree that labiaplasty can be extremely helpful for women who suffer from enlarged labia that cause discomfort during exercise, intercourse, or when wearing certain clothing. By reducing their size and appearance, patients are no longer self-conscious and feel much more at ease with their bodies – especially with their partners.
If you’d like more information about labiaplasty or vaginal cosmetic surgery in New York, Dr. Thomas Loeb is happy to answer all pertinent questions during a one-on-one consultation in his Fifth Avenue office. Please call 212-327-3700 to schedule a private consultation.
National Post, Wave of popularity for cosmetic surgery on female genitalia worries some critics, http://news.nationalpost.com/2014/01/30/wave-of-popularity-for-cosmetic-surgery-on-female-genitalia-worries-some-critics/
WebMD, Vaginoplasty and Labiaplasty, http://www.webmd.com/women/vaginoplasty-and-labiaplasty-procedures