This is an informed consent that has been prepared to ensure that you understand labiaplasty surgery, its intended benefits and risks, and alternatives to treatment.
A labiaplasty involves the reduction of a labia and/or the reshaping of an uneven labia surgically which aims to improve the appearance and reduce any associated discomfort. This can be due to a numbers of reasons including age, childbirth or some women are born with a large or irregular labia.
Alternative forms of management consist of not treating the area surgically.
Prior to the procedure, your surgeon will mark out the excess tissue that needs addressing in order to give you the look you desire. Local anaesthetic will then be injected with a number of injections to make the area go numb. This should be the only part of the procedure that can cause discomfort. Once the area is numb, your surgeon will remove the excess skin and underlying structures as well as reshaping as desired. Your surgeon will have discussed with you, the exact surgical plan as part of the consultation process. The operation itself takes around 1-11/2 hours.
After the procedure, your labia will appear swollen and bruised. Bruising is unavoidable in this type of procedure and is expected to last around 5-7 days. This can be treated effectively with the use of cool packs and mild painkillers as required. The initial healing period will vary from person to person although most patients feel comfortable after a week.
All associated after care instructions will be provided on a separate information sheet. As with any surgery it is important that you understand the potential risks and complications.
Scars will result from surgery and I understand their intended location. Additional scarring can result from poor or decreased wound healing ability. Most scars are barely noticeable and although full wound maturation can take up to 12 months. Poor scarring can be treated with the use of slicing sheeting or further adjustment surgery.
A collection of blood around the site of the surgery is called a haematoma. Small haematomas are not uncommon and usually resolve quickly without the need for any additional treatment. If a haematoma is large however it may be necessary to undo some of the stitches and wash out the blood clot in order to optimise the final outcome. As post-operative bleeding can delay normal healing and recovery. I understand that every effort is taken to minimise bleeding during surgery.
Bruising and Swelling
Bruising and swelling will result as a consequence of surgery which will settle within the first week of surgery. I understand that my labia will be swollen and puffy for the first week post-surgery and this has been explained to me.
Any surgical procedure involves a risk of infection and this has been explained to me. Infection following surgery is uncommon however it is important to follow all postoperative wound care instructions to prevent infection occurring. I understand that all measures will be taken to minimise this risk and that I will require preventative oral antibiotics. I also understand that if an infection was more serious then it may require transfer to hospital in order to receive intravenous antibiotics.
Occasionally wounds breakdown as a result of surgery or can be slow to heal as a result of infection, poor nutrition or poor blood supply. It is important that you tell your surgeon if you smoke or have any history of poor wound healing or scarring.
It is impossible for any surgeon to achieve perfect symmetry although every effort will be made to achieve symmetry.
In the areas where the skin has been cut, there will become numbness for some time after the operation. This can take anything from 3-6 months for normal sensation to return.
Skin necrosis is a rare complication of labiaplasty surgery. However it is important to be aware of the risk. Skin Necrosis can occur if a patient has poor nutrition or is a smoker. Skin Necrosis can normally be treated with dressings which will allow the skin edges to heal by secondary intention. In rare cases the necrotic skin can be excised and re-stitched. Poor scarring as a result of skin necrosis can also be treated with either further adjustment surgery once the area has healed.
Mild discomfort is common after a labiaplasty procedure. Mild discomfort can be remedied by the use of painkillers including paracetamol; and ibuprofen. It can also be relieved by the use of cool packs to the area.
Under or Over Correction
Occasionally further adjustment surgery is necessary if under or over correction has occurred. Every effort is made to ensure that this does not occur however this cannot be guaranteed.
Additional risks identified to your individual case
I confirm that I have read, understood and have taken time to consider all the identified risks as described above. I have also had the opportunity to discuss any additional concerns and questions with my surgeon. I have decided to proceed with the labiaplasty surgery with the full knowledge of the intended risks and benefits involved. I certify that I have fully informed my surgeon correctly and to the best of my knowledge my full medical history and status. I UNDERSTAND THAT WITHHOLDING MEDICAL INFORMATION COULD LEAD TO COMPLICATIONS OF PROBLEMS THAT MAY HAVE BEEN PREVENTED IF THAT INFORMATION WERE KNOWN PRIOR TO SURGERY.