VAGINAL FATIGUE: HOW-TO FIX IT
n our previous blog post, we discussed predisposing conditions to Vaginal Fatigue. There are now a variety of new technologies that have developed in the last 8 years to help treat these unwanted symptoms and restore your quality of life.
Laser Vaginal Rejuvenation
Many of us are familiar with the use of lasers to treat the effects of collagen loss in the face. These were developed over the last 20 years and are very effective at reversing collagen loss in the face. Laser applies heat to the tissues being treated which shortens the collagen in place by 30%. As well, the body interprets the burn as an injury and lays down new collagen as the support for skin healing. The net effect is to lift and tighten the skin. Laser technologies essentially deliver heat to the skin in one of two ways: full skin treatment or fractional skin treatment.
Full skin treatment
Laser energy is applied to the entire skin surface of the face. This is essentially a burn to all areas of the face and is usually either CO2 or Erbium based energy sources. Laser technology allows very precise depth of treatment to be applied. The depth of burn or ‘peel’ determines the downtime and eventual outcome. These laser sources work very well on the face and are often an alternative or complimentary plastic surgery procedures to ‘lift’ or tighten the facial collagen. Full skin laser treatments are not used for vaginal applications, due to the high risk of complications in this area.
Fractional Skin Treatment
In this form, thin areas of laser ablation are used to burn very small deep areas of mucosal or skin damage. More than 50% of the tissue area treated is not affected by the laser. This is due to the ability to very sharply focus laser energy, with very little collateral skin or mucosal damage. The net effect is the same lift and tighten effect without the downtime and possible complications of full skin treatment. Fractional treatment is the type used in all vaginal treatments. It can be either Erbium or CO2 based energy systems. In addition to ‘lift and tighten’ there is a general tightening of the vaginal canal that is noticeable with sex. As well, there is increased sensation with sexual activity. This sensitivity is the same that we see with any burn to the skin. There are several different types of lasers:
- MonaLisa Touch laser treatment is a simple procedure that can deliver both immediate and lasting relief and is clinically proven to work. The procedure will seem like your annual exam and likely be even quicker. A healthcare provider will insert the MonaLisa touch into your vagina and deliver laser energy “pulses”. Advantages include it is in-office, no anesthesia, no downtime, symptom relief after one minute and takes less than 5 minutes. The MTL delivers gentle laser energy to the vaginal wall tissue that stimulates a healing response and enhances moisture levels in the vaginal canal. A typical course of treatment is 3 procedures over 18 weeks.
- Fotona Incontilase and Intimilase laser systems. A consultation is required by a health care practitioner with specialized training to evaluate whether a woman is a suitable candidate. A pap smear at the time if requires ( if history and examination shows a woman to be a good candidate, she is offered the treatment appropriate for her concerns). Treatment is booked for three 20-30 minute sessions 1 month apart. A small amount of external vulvar gel is applied for pain killing (no pills are required). The women can walk out after the procedure and resume normal duties. There is very little discomfort and patient satisfaction is very high.
High Intensity Focused Electromagnetic Therapy ( HIFEM )
Electromagnetic currents of sufficient intensity can produce muscular contractions. HIFEM was developed to focus powerful electromagnetic waves onto the pelvic floor. The pelvic floor is a collection of fascial collagen and muscles that support the pelvic organs and prevent prolapse of the abdominal contents under the effect of gravity. The Emsella Chair allows a person to sit fully clothed on the chair. In 28 minutes, the person sitting on the chair is exposed to 10,000 electromagnetic pulses. These pulses are not painful but do create contraction of the pelvic floor, or Kegel contraction. The Kegels produced are stronger than one a person can produce voluntarily. Due to the physics of electromagnetic currents, hip and pelvic metal can be affected. Individuals with pelvic (low back rods) and hip (replacement) metal can not have these treatments. A history of a tubal ligation with clips or traditional pelvic surgery does not prevent the use of this technology.
Radiofrequency involves the use of a low voltage electric current that runs between 2 electrodes in contact with the skin. As the low voltage current passes through the tissues of the deep layers of the skin, heat is produced. Just like laser, this heat causes shortening of the existing collagen and the laying down of new collagen, The net effect is a tightening of the tissues. This energy has been used for many years in the face and has now been adapted to the vaginal area to tighten existing collagen and develop new collagen support.
To learn more about our feminine rejuvenation services, contact us today:
Sherwood Park: 780-464-4506
Spruce Grove: 780-962-3262
St. Albert: 587-290-2290