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What is a Vaginoplasty?

Nicole Madison
Updated May 17, 2024
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Vaginoplasty is a surgical procedure used to tighten a woman’s vaginal muscles. It is typically performed after childbirth has caused a woman’s vaginal muscles to be stretched and become more lax than usual. The procedure is said to make intercourse more enjoyable for both a woman and her partner.

A vaginoplasty is typically performed with the patient under the effects of general anesthesia. In some cases, however, only local anesthesia and sedation are used, numbing the affected areas and calming the patient instead of putting her to sleep. The surgery is typically completed in just an hour or two. After the surgery, a woman may spend the night in the hospital.

During a vaginoplasty, a surgeon joins over-stretched muscles together, creating a tighter vaginal canal. Any excess skin is trimmed away as part of the procedure. Sometimes lasers are used instead of scalpels for the purpose of getting rid of excess tissue in this area.

As is to be expected with all types of surgical procedures, there are some risks involved in undergoing a vaginoplasty. For example, there is a small risk that a patient could develop a bad reaction to the anesthesia used during the surgery. A patient could also develop bleeding problems, such as excessive bleeding or the abnormal collection of blood in the affected area. This surgery could also lead to an infection. For this reason, women are typically told to take showers instead of baths during the recovery period.

During the recovery period, a patient can expect to feel sore and have minor swelling. Usually, patients are able to walk without discomfort within just a few days of surgery, though they are encouraged to begin moving around on the same day the procedure takes place. Often, dissolving stitches are used for this surgery, so most patients don’t have to return to the hospital to have them removed. They do normally see their surgeons again for follow-up examinations, however.

Patients are typically advised to limit physical activity for about a week after a vaginoplasty. During this time, they are expected to rest as much as possible, facilitating healing. After about a week, they may return to work, but strenuous activities are best avoided. Generally, patients can resume all of their normal activities about three weeks after the procedure, with one exception. Many doctors advise patients to wait to resume sexual activity until four to six weeks have passed.

WiseGEEK is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Nicole Madison
By Nicole Madison
Nicole Madison's love for learning inspires her work as a WiseGEEK writer, where she focuses on topics like homeschooling, parenting, health, science, and business. Her passion for knowledge is evident in the well-researched and informative articles she authors. As a mother of four, Nicole balances work with quality family time activities such as reading, camping, and beach trips.

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Nicole Madison

Nicole Madison

Nicole Madison's love for learning inspires her work as a WiseGEEK writer, where she focuses on topics like...
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