Labiaplasty surgery is designed to reduce the size, and change the shape of the inner lips, the labia minora. Respected cosmetic doctor Georgina Konrat performs her own Labiaplasty technique (the DOVE technique) in Brisbane. Dr Konrat developed the technique specifically to give a more natural appearance. No tissue is cut away, so all the important nerves and blood vessels are retained.

Dr Konrat’s DOVE technique also helps to reduce potential complications from vaginal cosmetic surgery. Dr Konrat also uses a contouring technique, which allows her to shape the labia with precision and attention to symmetry. Loss of volume and structure in the outer lips or Labia Majora is also able to be rejuvenated using hyaluronic acid dermal fillers, structural dermal stimulators combined with Platelet Rich Plasma and Laser Vaginal Rejuvenation.

Why Choose the DOVE Technique for your Labiaplasty surgery?

The DOVE technique is a revolutionary development in Labia plasty surgery. It works to avoid a number of the risks of damage to the labia that have been experienced by traditional surgical methods.

View Photo Gallery of Labiaplasty Surgery Before and After Photos

What did we do in the past?

Prior to the development of the DOVE technique, there were two main types of Labioplasty surgery:

  • The Trim Method; and
  • The Wedge Technique.

Problem outcomes of past Labiaplasty techniques

Complications of the Trim Method

The Trim method uses longitudinal trimming of the edges of the labia minora with oversewing of the labial edge. This is an excellent technique as only a tiny amount of tissue is required to be removed to improve symmetry. However, there are both aesthetic and functional problems that may arise as a result of this technique:

Patient 1: Trim Method

Trim Method Complications: Too much tissue might be removed from labias.

With the Trim Method, there is a risk that too much tissue might be removed.

Patient 2: Trim Method

Trim Method Complications: Unnatural appearance of the trimmed labia minora and a bulky clitoral hood

With the Trim method, it is not possible to address the problem of excess clitoral hood skin. This means that while there will be an improvement in the appearance of the labia minora, the clitoris can actually have a more prominent and abnormal appearance.

Patient 3: Trim Method

Trim Method Complications: Unnatural appearance of the clitoral hood and scalloped appearance of the labias

There may also be scarring of the labial edge, which has a scalloped unnatural appearance.

Complications of the Wedge Technique

The Wedge Technique requires a full thickness wedge of tissue to be removed from the labia minora. There is the potential for a range of problems to occur with this method.

The tissues of the labia minora are thin and delicate and wedge excision (cutting a triangle of tissue from each of the labia and sewing together the edges) may result in the formation of a thick scar, which can be very uncomfortable.

The scar can also fail to heal well, and can even result in holes in the labia (as seen below).

Hole in Labia 1/3

Wedge Technique Complications: Hole in Labia Minora Photo 1 of 3

Hole in Labia 2/3

Wedge Technique Complications: Hole in Labia Minora Photo 2 of 3

Hole in Labia 3/3

Wedge Technique Complications: Hole in Labia Minora Photo 3 of 3

Failed Resection

Wedge Technique Complications: Failed wedge resection

Sometimes, there can be a complete failure of the two edges of the labia minora to heal together. This can result in significant discomfort and an unnatural appearance (above right).

How is the DOVE Technique of Labiaplasty surgery different?

The Dove Technique uses Radio-frequency and Laser to remove the external skin cells only. This ensures that the sub-epithelial plexus of blood vessels (the blood vessels just under the surface of the skin), the delicate interstitial tissues (the labial tissues just beneath the skin cells) and the nerves of the area are preserved.

The DOVE Labiaplasty Technique has been designed to ensure that these interstitial tissues remain intact, instead of being cut through completely. This means that the remaining tissues can be stitched more securely into position and the area can heal without many of the possible complications seen with the other techniques.

You may know Labiaplasty by a range of other names: labia reduction, labia minora surgery, labia reduction, vaginal rejuvenation, vagina reduction, vaginoplasty, vagina surgery or even ‘designer vagina’.

Labia minora vary greatly in size and shape. Many women develop large or irregular labia minora at or soon after puberty. For other women, the appearance of the labia minora can be altered by childbirth. Whatever the cause, labia minora that are too large or uneven can cause embarrassment with sexual partners as well as discomfort and irritation from tight clothing and sporting activities. Sometimes the need is simply to feel better about this most personal part of your body.

Dr Konrat Labiaplasty Consultation

Labiaplasty Surgery in Detail

Patient journey

Pre-Operation

  • In-depth consultation with Dr Georgina Konrat. Examination and discussion of your desired outcome in a confidential relaxed atmosphere. Dr Konrat will explain the procedure in detail. We understand that you may not remember or understand everything you hear in your consultation, so we encourage you to take notes to review at home, and to call or email Dr Konrat with any questions or concerns you may have about your intended surgery.
  • Pre-operative blood tests.
  • One week prior to your surgery, you will commence taking Kellogs Guardian Flakes to assist with ease of bowel action. You will continue this for three weeks after the surgery for the same reason.
  • This surgery can be undertaken during your menstrual period, so you should have no concerns if it coincides with your surgical booking.

The Operation

  • The surgery is performed as day surgery in an accredited Day Surgery facility and is performed under local anaesthetic with sedation (twilight anaesthetic).
  • When you arrive you will be admitted by one of the operating theatre nurses. Local anaesthetic cream is applied to the area. This makes the area very numb.
  • Pre-operative photos are taken and special surgical drawings mark the areas to be treated.
  • You will be very sleepy, and throughout the procedure you will be entirely comfortable. At times you may even drift into a deep sleep.
  • Long acting local anaesthetic is infiltrated into the area to be treated. At no time is there any pain or discomfort associated with the surgical procedure.

Post-Operation

  • During the first twenty-four hours after the operation, you will be quite uncomfortable, but this is well managed with pain relief medications prescribed for you and by using ice packs to help reduce swelling and inflammation in these delicate areas.
  • There will be a number of tiny dissolvable sutures in the skin, and also some just inside the opening of the vagina. Although these are dissolvable, most of the stitches will need to be removed gently at around 10 – 14 days after your procedure.
  • You will be prescribed a Betadine spray to apply to your stitches morning and night for the first week after your operation.You will be prescribed antibiotics to take orally for at least one week after the surgery.
  • Most women find they can resume normal activities after 5 days.
  • Usually sexual activity may resume in 6 weeks.
  • The first 7 – 10 days are quite uncomfortable and we recommend you do not wear jeans, tight pants or other restrictive clothing during this time.
  • It is highly recommended to take at least 3 – 4 days to spend most of the time just resting following the surgery. After that, for the next week, you may gradually return to gentle daily activities. Keep in mind that there are many tiny sutures in very delicate skin that will require at least two weeks to heal well.

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Possible Risks & Complications

This information about the possible risks and complications of Labia minora surgery is meant to inform you, but it should not frighten or alarm you. You should remember that the vast majority of patients do not have complications. However, since complications can and sometimes do occur, you need to know about them. If you are uncertain about anything you read, you should bring your questions to your complimentary consultation with Dr Konrat.

Infection

This is rare: taking the prescribed antibiotics usually prevents any frank infection from developing. However, minor infection can possibly occur and can affect the rate of healing. If this happens, some small areas may take a little longer to heal than others. This is an area where a large number of bacteria and other organisms normally live every day. Their environment is disturbed following surgery and sometimes very minor infection occurs, which is why taking the prescribed antibiotics is so important.

Bleeding / Bruising

Rarely a small clot or hematoma may develop. This is not serious unless a very large and painful lump develops. This is very rare and almost never occurs. When it does occur, please notify Dr Konrat or her surgical nurse so that they can perform an assessment and assist you immediately. Early intervention is best and contributes to healing.

Swelling

The tissues in this area are very delicate and minor swelling may persist for some weeks. This is not unusual, and will heal well in time. (Women often experience similar healing after childbirth, particularly if they have required stitches.)

Asymmetry

Although all care is taken to achieve complete symmetry, both sides may not be exactly the same prior to the surgery and consequently it might be difficult to have them perfectly symmetrical after the surgery. During your consultation Dr Konrat will help you understand what you can expect.

GENERAL RISKS OF SURGERY

Because surgery is such a vital part of modern medicine, there is a tendency to forget that there are risks associated with every type of surgery. While these risks are small, every person undergoing surgery should be aware of the risks.

Wounds

All internal and external wounds need time to heal after surgery. Sutures or stitches and other material are used to hold wounds closed while they heal.

Wound break-down

In a small percentage of cases, tiny areas of the scar will not completely heal. This may leave a tiny hole where the stitch was, or a small area approximately 1 cm long which does not close as fast as the rest of the stitches. When this occurs there are two options: watch and wait, as the wounds are likely to close gradually and heal on their own. If, after assessment, Dr Konrat feels the overall aesthetic result will be improved by closing a small wound breakdown, then this is done by placing a few stitches in the open area to assist with faster healing.

Infections

Despite taking precautions, infections can occur during and just after surgery. These may be general, such as pneumonia, or specific to Labiaplasty surgery. Because of their generally good health, labiaplasty patients usually have a lower risk of developing general infections such as pneumonia.

Pulmonary Risks

  • Patients have a risk of forming a blood clot in the leg (deep vein thrombosis) that breaks off and gets stuck in the lung circulation (pulmonary embolism). This is minimised by the wearing of surgical ‘stockings’ during the surgery, and by getting the patient out of bed as soon as possible.
  • You will also be encouraged to breathe deeply when you wake up from the anaesthetic as this expands your lungs and helps ensure your blood oxygen levels are good.

Risks of Anaesthesia

  • Labiaplasty is performed under Twilight anaesthetic with long acting local anaesthesia, which carries a low level of risk.
  • This method carries the risk of respiratory distress, adverse reactions to the medications or medication overdose.
  • As a rule, these risks are very low in cosmetic surgery patients, because the patients are generally in good health. Dr Konrat will take a full medical history, will order a number of tests prior to surgery and will make lifestyle recommendations to ensure your health is optimal before the surgery. This will minimise any general risks.

Mental Health disorders and Elective Surgery

  • It is important that all patients seeking to undergo elective surgery have realistic expectations that focus on improvement rather than perfection.
  • Complications or less than satisfactory results are sometimes unavoidable, may require additional surgery and can be stressful.
  • Please discuss openly with Dr Konrat in your consultation prior to surgery, any history of emotional depression or mental health disorders. If you are unsure whether a matter is relevant, please mention it anyway. Although many individuals may benefit psychologically from the results of elective cosmetic surgery, the effects on mental health can never be predicted and could possibly have a negative influence on emotional stability.

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