Everything You Need To Know About Hymenal Remnants

Posted by ALVR | November 25, 2023

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If you’re like most people, at some point in your life you’ve probably noticed something about your body and wondered, “Is this normal?” Maybe it was a funny looking mole or a bump on your skin. Maybe it was the size or shape of the nail on your pinky toe. Or, maybe it was something a little more, shall we say, “personal,” that you were slightly embarrassed to discuss, let alone Google… And odds are that, after a little research, you discovered that whatever it was you were curious about was not only perfectly ordinary, but totally harmless. 

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With that being said, sometimes perfectly normal things can become an issue for you later on down the line. This also seems like a good time for us to note that it’s always best to check with your doctor or a specialist like a urogynecologist if you have a question about a potential issue. Something that falls squarely into this category is the presence of hymenal remnants, also referred to as hymenal tags (to see photos of hymenal remnants, watch the before and after video at the bottom of this page).

What exactly is a hymen, anyway?

When discussing hymenal remnants, it’s helpful to have some general knowledge about hymens for context. Now, if you are already an expert on hymens, we would 1) like to commend you (great job!), and 2) like to ask for your patience while we review some key information.

The hymen is a membrane located inside the vagina that covers the vaginal opening. It can be many shapes and sizes (some women are born without one) and by the time most people reach adulthood it has undergone physical changes, such as stretching or tearing. This tends to be a result of natural thinning with age, intercourse, tampon use, childbirth, recreational activity, etc. These changes can leave behind tissue outgrowths, which – you guessed it! – are called hymenal remnants.

How to handle troublesome hymenal remnants.

Some women that have hymenal remnants never feel or see them, so they never present an issue or require treatment. For others, the presence of hymenal remnants can result in a change in the physical appearance of their vaginas or create discomfort during activities like intercourse and tampon application/removal.

The hymenal remnants or hymenal tags as they are sometimes referred to are typically asymptomatic however some patients may notice protrusion of the tissue at the opening of the vagina or may even have some discomfort if the tissue becomes inflamed or irritated. The presence of the tissue itself is not dangerous and fairly common, it does not pose a health risk if left in place. If patients are bothered by the excess or protruding tissue, a small in-office procedure can be performed to remove the redundant tissue.

Can hymenal remnants go away on their own?

Our bodies can heal themselves in incredible ways. Broken skin grafts itself back together, blood refills itself after you donate a pint, and canker sores dissipate in a matter of days (Psst. Stop licking it). But not every change in the human body gets resolved on its own—even on the comparatively fast-healing areas of our genitals. That’s how hymenal tags come to form and come to stay. 

Your hymen is a perforated membrane formed around your vaginal opening, and though it’s thin, and meant to be bypassed by menses, penetrative sex, and vaginal childbirth, it’s filled with the same nerves and blood vessels that allow it to communicate sensation and circulation. It’s a common misconception that the tissue simply disappears after being torn—rather it typically heals and shrinks back. However, because your hymen is living tissue, it’s subject to the same normal, yet unexpected phenomena as the rest of your body. 

Sometimes bits of your hymen simply don’t recede back, or they can thicken and lengthen with hormonal changes or age. When hymenal remnants protrude forward both inside and outside of your vagina in a noticeable way, you may be subject to discomfort during tampon insertion or during sexual activity, or displeasure with your vagina’s appearance.  

Fortunately, if hymenal remnants are negatively impacting your quality of life, treatment options are available. Austin Labiaplasty and Vaginal Rejuvenation offers Hymenal Remnants Removal (or hymenectomy) which entails excising the excess hymenal tissue to alleviate discomfort and enhance appearance. They are typically performed in the office with oral sedation and take up to 60 minutes. We use dissolvable sutures to ease the healing process when necessary, and patients are to avoid sexual intercourse for about 6 weeks. To see a before and after of hymenal remnants removal, view the video below.

If you’re interested in hymenal remnants removal, schedule your consultation today. Our team will discuss your options and answer any questions or concerns. 



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We’ve talked about minimizing the appearance of your hymen, but what if you want to restore or repair your hymen? While a hymenectomy is a procedure to remove hymenal tissue, a hymenoplasty or hymen reconstruction surgery is the process of […]

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What Are Hymenal Tags?

Chances are you’re not here by accident, you’re reading this because you wanted to know: what are hymenal tags? Are they normal? Should they be removed? Does everyone have them? What’s their deal??? You’ve got questions, and we’ve got answers.  […]

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Before & After

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