Also known as female genital plastic surgery or aesthetic vaginal surgery
Vaginal rejuvenation usually combines vaginoplasty (“tightening” of the vagina) and/or labiaplasty or vulvaplasty (reshaping of the vulva or labia, the outer and inner lips of the vagina). It has become an increasingly popular option for women. For individuals who desire recontouring after childbirth, significant weight loss, aging or injury to genital structures, vaginal rejuvenation offers increased self-confidence and comfort.
These are the top three pros and cons to weigh when considering vaginal rejuvenation. If you want to focus on what is unique to you, please consult with your aesthetic plastic surgeon.
Are you a good candidate for vaginal rejuvenation?
The following are some common reasons why you may want to consider vaginal rejuvenation:
If you are in good general health, have a positive attitude and realistic expectations, you are most likely a good candidate for this procedure.
The most common vaginal procedure today is laser vaginal rejuvenation; your surgeon will discuss the most appropriate technique for you. A pudendal block is given to provide 18 to 24 hours of postoperative pain control. The laser is used very much like a scalpel, but it allows a precise aesthetic result, with less bleeding. Redundant (extra) tissue will be removed and the incisions will be sutured inside the vagina.
For a labiaplasty, the desired labial/vulval contours are outlined with a surgical marker and sutures are then placed. A laser is used to remove tissue beyond the desired contour, then skin staples are placed to align the edges of the labia, absorbable sutures are used and the staples are removed.
Your surgeon will discuss with you which areas of correction or enhancement are best for you:
For the vaginoplasty, the incisions are made to the mucosal walls inside the vagina. For a labiaplasty, the incisions are made to the labia minora or majora so that excess tissue can be removed.
It’s important to choose your surgeon based on:
Members of the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery are experienced and qualified to perform your aesthetic procedure. Learn how to select a surgeon.
After finding a board-certified plastic surgeon in your area who is experienced in performing vaginal rejuvenation, you will need to make an office appointment for your consultation. Generally, because of the in-depth nature of the consultation, there is a cost associated with the initial visit.
During your initial consultation, you will have the opportunity to discuss your cosmetic goals. Your surgeon will evaluate you as a candidate for vaginal rejuvenation and clarify what a vaginoplasty and/or labiaplasty can do for you. Understanding your goals and medical condition, both alternative and additional treatments may be considered (see related procedures).
You should come to the consultation prepared to discuss your complete medical history. This will include information about:
Based on your goals, physical characteristics, and the surgeon’s training and experience, your surgeon will share recommendations and information with you, including:
For a general list of questions to ask your surgeon about his or her background, to find out about plastic surgery safety and to plan your procedure, visit the Planning Toolkit.
We developed these questions to help you:
It is important for you to take an active role in your surgery, so please use this list of questions as a starting point for your initial consultation.
Your surgeon will provide you with preoperative instructions, answer any questions that you may have, take a detailed medical history and perform a physical exam to determine your fitness for surgery.
In advance of your procedure, your surgeon will ask you to:
Vaginal rejuvenation is usually performed on an outpatient basis. Be sure to arrange for someone to drive you home after surgery and to stay with you at least the first night after surgery.
What can I expect on the day of vaginal rejuvenation surgery?
Your surgery may be performed in an accredited hospital, a freestanding ambulatory facility or an office-based surgical suite. Most vaginal rejuvenation procedures take at least one to two hours to complete but may take longer.
You will probably be permitted to go home after a short observation period, unless you and your plastic surgeon have made other plans for your immediate postoperative recovery or additional corrective procedures have been performed that require longer observation in the facility.
Your surgeon will discuss how long it will be before you can return to your normal level of activity and work. After surgery, you and your caregiver will receive detailed instructions about your postsurgical care, including information about:
See options for short-term recovery locations in Aftercare and Recovery (Planning Toolkit).
Immediately after your vaginal rejuvenation
There may be some bruising and swelling in the initial postoperative period. In addition, you may experience minor discomfort, which can be controlled by medication. Bed rest the day of surgery is recommended and you may return to work within five to seven days, depending on your activity level. You should refrain from engaging in sexual intercourse for one month.
Recovery time frame after vaginal rejuvenation
It is vitally important that you follow all patient care instructions provided by your surgeon. This will include information about wearing compression garments, care of your drains, taking an antibiotic if prescribed and the level and type of activity that is safe. Your surgeon will also provide detailed instructions about the normal symptoms you will experience and any potential signs of complications. It is important to realize that the amount of time it takes for recovery varies greatly among individuals.
The results of a vaginal rejuvenation procedure are intended to be permanent, but significant weight gain or a subsequent pregnancy can alter the results.
Maintain a relationship with your aesthetic plastic surgeon
For safety, as well as the most beautiful and healthy outcome, it’s important to return to your plastic surgeon's office for follow-up evaluation at prescribed times and whenever you notice any changes in your vagina. Do not hesitate to contact your surgeon when you have any questions or concerns.
The cost of vaginal rejuvenation varies from doctor to doctor and from one geographic area to another. Because vaginal rejuvenation is elective surgery, insurance does not cover these costs. Many surgeons offer patient financing plans to make the procedure more affordable.
These numbers only reflect the physician/surgeon fees last year and do not include fees for the surgical facility, anesthesia, medical tests, prescriptions, surgical garments or other miscellaneous costs related to vaginal rejuvenation.
Choose your surgeon based on quality, training and experience—not cost.
See why ASAPS members are widely recognized for upholding the highest standards in the area of aesthetic plastic surgery by viewing their basic credentials, training and certifications.
Fortunately, significant complications from vaginal rejuvenation are infrequent. Your specific risks will be discussed during your consultation.
All surgical procedures have some degree of risk. Some of the potential complications of all surgeries are:
You can help minimize certain risks by following the advice and instructions of your board-certified plastic surgeon, both before and after your vaginal rejuvenation surgery.