Postoperative Day 1-
Like usual, I saw October’s Patient of the Month on the day after her labiaplasty surgery. Because she had taken a little prescription pain medication, she was unable to drive herself, and thus her mother had driven her to her appointment. Patients who do not require preoperative anxiolytics (like Valium) or postoperative prescription pain medications (like Percocet) are able to drive themselves to and from their labiaplasty surgery.
Upon arrival, the patient was quickly brought into an examination room at the Plastic Surgery Center of Tampa. She said she did well overnight, was able to sleep relatively well, and had tried to elevate her legs and pelvis as instructed.
On examination, the patient had a small amount of postoperative bleeding and swelling, which is all normal. Despite this, I could tell she was going to have a dramatic improvement in her level of comfort and appearance once she was completely healed. I emphasized with the patient to spend the weekend relaxing, wear the postoperative compression garment as instructed, and to use ice packs as necessary. Finally, I arranged to see her again in 3 days for her second postoperative appointment.
Postoperative Day 4-
I saw my October Patient of the Month, a labiaplasty patient, on postoperative day 4 for her second postoperative appointment. She said she was still having pain and taking some of the prescription pain medications in the evening when she was most sore. However, because she did not require pain medications during the day, she was able to drive herself to her appointment. She did admit to not wearing the compression garment all the time, as instructed. Otherwise, she said she was healing well and remained in good spirits.
A quick physical examation showed she still had some swelling and had developed a small amount of bruising on the posterior (or backside) labia minora. A small amount of bruising following a labiaplasty is not uncommon, particularly in those patients who do not have a lot of postoperative compression. Despite this, I was happy with how she was healing and arranged to see her again in one week. I gave her “doctor’s note” in case she wanted to take a day off class in the coming week and told her to call for anything.
Postoperative Week 2 ½-
My October Patient of the month, a labiaplasty patient, couldn’t make it to her regularly scheduled appointment, but she was kind enough to message and email me on her progress! She said, “I have zero complaints, everything is looking awesome. I had the smallest bit of swelling at the location of the lowest stitch area the other day after doing a lot of walking and none since. I really couldn’t be happier. I’ll reschedule as soon as possible!”
She was also able to send a 2 ½ week follow-up photo. As you can see, most of the swelling is decreased, she has no more bruising, and all of her external sutures are dissolved and/or fallen off. Assuming all continues to go well, I will allow her to discontinue vaginal precautions after her next follow-up appointment and gradually resume exercise.
Dr. Traci M. Temmen