Corrective surgery to restore intimate integrity
Africa, the continent of the famous Paris-Dakar (that began on January 6 in Peru), is populated with numerous ethnic groups. In the continuity of their ancestral cultural practices, and despite it being illegal in most African countries, some still undergo female genital mutilation (FGM), an operation that deprives millions of women of their clitoris, often their labia, and sometimes leaving the perineal area closed (infibulation).
This mutilation always leaves a deep wound, which can be a source of physical and psychological discomfort. To help them overcome this wound and restore hope and a more fulfilling sex life, Professor Paniel has been working on clitoral repair: clitoroplasty. Performed since 2001, this operation is partially covered by French national health insurance.
A clitoroplasty is a method of reconstructing the clitoris, thus restoring an appearance as natural as possible of the functional anatomy of patients. This technique consists in reconstructing the clitoris and the labia using what remains of the clitoris in the scarred area. The residual tissue of the clitoris is dissected and returned to its natural position, with or without a mucosal flap. This operation is performed under general anesthesia and an overnight stay in hospital is customary.
An operation in the intimate area is tricky. After a night in hospital, it will be possible to have a shower. However, baths should be avoided for at least one month after the operation and the operated areas must be dried gently. The final result will be visible after one or two months depending on how quickly the patient heals. As the functional sensitivity of the clitoris is not just physical, recovery will vary from woman to woman.
Intimate reconstructive surgery requires comprehensive patient care. Several consultations will be necessary to assess the expectations in terms of the result but also the psychological condition of the patient.
A multidisciplinary team generally treats a patient wishing to undergo a clitoroplasty comprising a psychologist, a gynecologist, and potentially a physiotherapist and a surgeon specializing in genital reconstructive surgery. This comprehensive care will enable the lasting physical and mental recovery of the patient so they can deal with their past.