Hymenoplasty is a surgical process of tightening the outer edges of the vagina by reconstructing the hymen tissue. Since the hymen is present along the vaginal entrance, hymenoplasty is often sought as a part of treating vaginal damage caused during accidental falls, heavy weightlifting and other scenarios wherein the hymen’s structural stability has been compromised. Hymenoplasty is reputed to be largely safe with negligible risks. However, the surgical procedure does present some complications and potential risks.
Hymenoplasty is a surgical procedure that involves restoring to normal a torn hymen for cultural, religious or social reasons.
The hymen is a ring-like skin membrane that sits in the lower 1/3 of the vagina. It marks the spot that the vulvovaginal bulbs fuse with the Mullerian ducts from above then hollow out to form the vagina. Most often there is a 5 or 6 pointed star opening in the hymen after maturity. With first intercourse or by accident from falling or tampons, 2 or 3 areas tear in the hymen. Most often there is bleeding at the time of tearing.
The hymenoplasty procedure (to reconstruction the hymen), is after using local anesthetic
for tissue dissection and to stop small blood vessels from bleeding, the areas which were torn are "denuded" meaning the upper layer of tissue is removed. This is so that they will grow back together when they are approximated with stitches. Then after they are denuded, the edges are brought back together to reform the star-shaped "ring" as it was prior to relations, accident etc. It is made small enough, so that when first sexual relations occur later on, it will "tear" again, there will be some pain, and there will be bleeding.
Most surgeons only perform hymenoplasty or hymen repair (hymen restoration surgery) at the request of someone who needs the surgery for ethnic, cultural, or religious reasons. Also, most surgeons will not perform hymenoplasty surgery in a woman who has given birth.
Hymenoplasty generally takes about one to two hours, with patients able to return to work the next day. Restoration of the hymen is done on an outpatient basis, under local anesthesia or sedation. Prior to surgery, patients are required to have a pre-surgical consultation and thorough gynecological examination. During this time, she should communicate her needs and expectations to the doctor, and in turn, will learn
Vaginal physiological state significantly affects a woman’s physiological state. Structure reconstruction of the vagina may well bring back the younger feel, and contribute the sexual life and self esteem improvement a woman is looking for.
Some surgeons perform procedures involving laser surgery, where others use methods such as radio surgical techniques or scalpel techniques.
Is it a safe procedure?
Since the hymen is present along the vaginal entrance, hymenoplasty is often sought as a part of treating vaginal damage caused during accidental falls, heavy weightlifting and other scenarios wherein the hymen’s structural stability has been compromised. Hymenoplasty is reputed to be largely safe with negligible risks. However, the surgical procedure does present some complications and potential risks.
Potential Risks and Complications of Hymenoplasty
Hymenoplasty is a surgical process of tightening the outer edges of the vagina by reconstructing the hymen tissue.
Post-Operative Bruising, Swelling and Pain
Though the procedure is undemanding in terms of the medical expertise required to reconstruct the hymen, a slightly demanding recovery period is indicated for some people. This usually happens among women where the hymen is naturally positioned in such a manner that it is compressed to a greater degree by the surrounding vaginal tissue. This can make the post-operative period a bit painful.
Though some amount of discomfort in walking and sitting is indicated for all women undergoing hymenoplasty, such patients are susceptible to some degree of bruising and severe swelling. Again, this is more likely to happen among women wherein the inner skin tends to rub hard against the vaginal skin upon walking.
Taking some basic, over-the-counter medications is the only solution for such problems since they aren’t considered very serious. Most surgeons agree that greater bed rest and allowing natural healing to take its due course is the wisest option to solve such problems.
Bleeding and Hematomas
Please note that some degree of bleeding isn't a cause for worry. In fact, depending upon the age of the patient and the condition of the hymen, some form of bleeding might be expected. However, this kind of minimal bleeding is expected to stop within a few days after the surgery. Most surgeons opine that this bleeding is at par with menstrual bleeding in terms of intensity and thus, should not be perceived negatively.
However, the problem arises when the bleeding doesn’t subside and its intensity seems to rise. This is when the chances of a hematoma surface. Though a hematoma can be surgically drained and treated by the attending surgeon, some specialists might be a bit hesitant to treat it immediately. This means enduring a few days of living with a hematoma that is known to be painful.
Secondly, if the hematoma is not treated in a comprehensive manner, it can develop into a major hematoma, much after the post-operative care. This might need a separate surgery. Such untreated hematomas can also complicate into severe blood clots that might lead to embolism.
There is a possibility that the treated hymen can become discolored. Rather than identifying the discoloration, decoding its exact nature is more perplexing, i.e. the discoloration might be temporary and resolve itself without any medication or it might turn into permanent pigmentation.
As opposed to post-operative pain, some patients might complain of numbness in the vaginal area. Though this is expected for a few hours after the surgery due to the use of anesthetics, the numbness might continue for days. The worst scenario arises when the numbness is caused by a nerve injury that occurred during the surgery.
Hymenoplasty is one of the three major areas of cosmetic vaginal surgeries. The procedure aims to correct dysfunctions and improve the woman`s hidden aesthetics. The way a woman feels about the look and sensation in her vagina and pubic areas has a major impact on her self-esteem, her sexual desire, and her intimate relationship.