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After menopause or an oophorectomy procedure (often performed as part of a complete hysterectomy), estrogen and progesterone levels in women drop dramatically. The lack of supportive female hormones can cause the vaginal wall to undergo atrophy. An atrophied vaginal wall is thin and does not produce mucus in response to sexual arousal. The result can often be pain during intercourse.

The libido in women (sexual desire) is primarily controlled by testosterone. Testosterone levels do not drop in women due to menopause or oophorectomy, and the combination of a decrease in female hormones and maintenance of the level of testosterone often leads to an increase in libido. The combination of increased libido and painful intercourse can be very frustrating to women and their partners. Application of artificial lubricants can help somewhat, but often does not completely relieve the discomfort due to the atrophied vaginal wall.

MonaLisa Touch™

The MonaLisa Touch™ is an FDA-approved device to treat vaginal wall atrophy. The device is inserted into the vagina and used to deliver CO2 laser energy to the tissues of the vaginal wall. In response, the tissues begin producing more collagen and begin rejuvenating, returning to a more youthful form. Clinical studies have demonstrated a pronounced thickening of the vaginal wall two months after treatment with the MonaLisa Touch™.

What to Expect

The procedure takes only about five minutes and is virtually pain-free. The device is inserted into the vagina, and this will feel similar to the speculum used by a gynecologist during a normal pelvic exam. There may be some minor heating or tingling sensations during the procedure. There is no downtime, but patients may be encouraged to refrain from sexual activity for two to three days after each treatment. Three treatments delivered over 18 weeks are necessary, and full results will not be experienced until around two months after the last treatment. A yearly touch-up procedure is necessary to maintain the results.

Candidates

The MonaLisa Touch™ is intended for women experiencing painful intercourse due to vaginal atrophy after menopause or oophorectomy, or while taking estrogen blockers for breast cancer. It can also be helpful for pre-menopausal women experiencing vaginal laxness due to childbirth. It cannot treat low libido, sexual arousal disorders, vaginismus, or difficulty reaching orgasm due to lack of blood flow to the clitoris.

If you feel that you are a candidate, contact Ciao Bella Medical Center and Spa today. We welcome the opportunity to review your concerns and schedule a treatment plan to provide you relief. Get started today.

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