Around the world, there are countless women who are eager to find an effective, surgical way to repair their hymens. Whether the hymen is damaged as a result of high-impact exercise or sports, the use of tampons, horseback riding, the performance of a pap smear, or the existence of a sexual history, hymen repair can provide a reliable solution. For women who naturally lack this small piece of tissue, or who’ve already lost it, hymen repair offers lasting peace of mind. Here at the office of Mark P. Solomon, MD, we encourage you to learn more about this
What Hymen Repair is and Why It is Important
Also known as hymenoplasty, hymen repair is a surgical procedure that’s designed to restore or rebuild the hymen. This is a small piece of tissue that naturally encloses the vaginal area. Unfortunately, this delicate covering is not impervious to normal wear and impact-related injuries. Young girls and women who use tampons, receive Pap smears, have gone horseback riding, or who’ve participated in high-energy, high-impact sports like gymnastics, may have ruptured their hymens despite their lack of sexual experience. There are many actions, activities, and events that can cause a woman’s hymen to rupture prematurely. More than any functional benefits that this layer of tissue provides, the hymen has a symbolic importance that can make its accidental loss downright devastating. Once hymenoplasty has been performed, however, the vaginal area will again be naturally enclosed.
How Hymen Repair is Performed
As with all other reconstructive procedures, hymenoplasty can be customized to suit the condition and concerns of the patient. For example, in instances in which the hymen has been torn by the insertion of tampons, medical devices, or other objects, the repair specialist can simply stitch together the pieces that remain. As the hymen heals, it will effectively grow back together so that the covering feels and responds exactly as an undamaged hymen would.
There are some patients who have absolutely no remnants of the natural hymen. Impact related injuries or other events may have damaged or removed the hymen entirely. There are also many women born without a hymen at all. In these cases, the vaginal opening can be tightened by the surgeon. Then, a small section of vaginal tissue can be additionally sourced to construction a very natural-looking and natural-feeling hymen. This new hymen will rupture during intercourse just as a natural hymen would.
Patients are placed under sedation or general anesthesia at the start of these procedures. Whether rebuilding an existing hymen or creating one from sourced tissues, the entire treatment takes less than an hour. After a very short resting period, patients are free to go home.
Getting Ready for a Hymenoplasty Procedure
The prospect of undergoing any invasive procedure can be daunting. Unfortunately, with hymenoplasty, the sensitive nature of this treatment often makes patients less proactive about asking questions and discussing any special concerns that they might have. As with any reconstructive treatment, however, it is important for patients to have all the information they need before proceeding. Moreover, there are a lot of key details patients should share with the doctor in order to ensure safe treatments and optimal outcomes. As such, the first and most important step in preparing for your hymenoplasty is simply opening the lines of communication. Hymen repair services are always provided with the utmost professionalism, confidentiality, kindness, and consideration. One very important goal of these efforts is to meet patients’ needs while honoring and preserving their dignity. You are encouraged to talk openly with the doctor during your consultation appointment. The more open you are, the easier it will be to find the best and most needs-specific solution.
In addition to talking to the doctor when you have questions or information that you need to share, you should also make sure that your body is in good general health ahead of treatment. Chronic health issues such as diabetes and high blood pressure should be properly managed with medications and gotten under control before this procedure is scheduled. You will also need to share a list of any store-bought or prescription medications that you are currently taking with the doctor. This list should include any herbal or nutritional supplements that you routinely use. Certain products are known blood thinners that can have a negative impact on surgical outcomes. Using these ahead of treatment or immediately after can significantly increase the risk of bruising and other clotting-related complications and problems.
NSAIDs or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs are often overlooked by patients when compiling their medical lists. Aspirin and ibuprofen, the most common of these products, can be easily purchased in-store. They are often used by patients for ongoing pain management or as part of preventative aspirin therapies for heart health. These medications should be discontinued at least one to two weeks before surgery. They should also be avoided throughout the formative stages of the healing process. You general doctor may be able to recommend suitable alternatives.
There are even several foods that you might want to eliminate from your diet for several weeks in order to improve your general health, and prevent thinning of the blood. For instance, much like NSAIDs, alcohol is a known blood thinner. Due to this and many other reasons, patients are advised against drinking alcohol on the night before their surgeries, and immediately after. Moreover, alcohol consumption should be limited throughout the entire duration of the healing process. It is important to note that excess sodium can also have the same effect on the blood. This is why many people limit their intake of high-sodium foods such as fast food, and processed foods or food products. Smoking cessation is always advised for active tobacco users. Smoker constricts the blood vessels, inhibits normal blood flow, and impedes the progress of natural, post-treatment healing.
What to Expect After Hymenoplasty
As the newly repaired or newly built hymen heals, it is important for patients to take it easy. This means getting plenty of rest, eating lots of nutrient-dense foods that support tissue regeneration, and staying hydrated. The treatment area will need to be gently washed with soap and water to minimize the likelihood of infection, and to ensure optimal conditions for post-procedure healing. Patients are given prescription pain relievers and antibiotics for the recovery period to ensure their continued comfort, and to further minimize the risk of local infection. Many people experience slight bruising and swelling immediately after their procedures that lasts between two and four weeks. Overall discomfort, however, is usually very minimal.
All throughout the six-week healing process, women should avoid vaginal insertion of any kind. In fact, it is best to avoid inserting anything into the vagina including tampons and small-sized medicine applicators until the matrimonial night. This is important for ensuring that the newly constructed hymen remains in tact, and that it maintains its durable and unblemished look and feel until it has been purposefully ruptured. Six weeks gives all necessary surgical sites ample time to heal. Over this time, the new hymen will become progressively less like to break unexpectedly and at the wrong time. While healing, women should avoid all strenuous activities and heavy lifting as these may negatively impact the recovery process.
It should be possible for you to return to work within just one day of your hymenoplasty procedure. Within one week of treatment, light exercise can be resumed as well. All other strenuous activities should be delayed until after your wedding night in order to successfully preserve the integrity of the newly constructed barrier.
Who is a Good Candidate for Hymen Repair?
Any woman who wants to ensure that her hymen remains intact on her wedding night may be a good candidate for hymenoplasty. Some women are born without a hymen, while others accidentally rupture theirs by engaging in various normal, everyday activities. This treatment must be received no fewer than six weeks ahead of the matrimonial celebration. When the noticeable rupture of a hymen during matrimonial intercourse is significant due to cultural, social, personal, or religious reasons, this treatment can be used to create a durable, reliable barrier to the vagina. In fact, it is even possible for hymenoplasty to create hymens with active blood vessels that lightly bleed upon breaking, just as many natural hymens do. During your consultation appointment, you’ll have the comfort of knowing that a female nurse is present in the room. You will also be given detailed instructions on preparing for this treatment, and will receive a complete gynecological examination as part of preparing your customized treatment plan.
Choosing to Pair This Procedure with Other Forms of Vaginoplasty
Depending upon the nature and severity of wear that the vagina has already sustained, some patients may be able to benefit from additional forms of vaginoplasty when having their hymen repair procedures performed. Labiaplasty is a treatment meant to refresh the vagina and restore the look of youth and newness. During this procedure, loose and sagging labia minor can be neatly trimmed to achieve a sleek and streamlined appearance. Vaginal tightening can also be provided to reduce any slackness in the vaginal canal, and to complete the authenticity and feel of the newly rebuilt hymen.
Is Hymen Repair the Right Solution for You?
To learn more about what hymen repair may be able to do for you, we warmly invite you to reach out and make an appointment with the office of Mark P. Solomon, MD. At our convenient locations in Beverly Hills and Bala Cynwyd, our caring and devoted team of professionals will be pleased to explain this option to you in greater detail and answer any questions you may have. Contact us today to set up your consultation – we look forward to speaking with you!