It’s not a topic most women openly speak of, but vaginal health needs attention. This broad subject covers a number of smaller topics, including dry tissues, burning during urination, painful intercourse, and urinary incontinence. At Aurora OB-GYN in San Antonio, TX, we urge you to have a frank discussion with our staff so we can deliver safe and effective treatment. That’s right – thanks to the MonaLisa Touch, you don’t have to live with the symptoms we just listed.
How Do You Prepare for MonaLisa Touch?
Because the MonaLisa is a straightforward treatment, you don’t have to worry about much preparation before your appointment. One of the most common suggestions we make includes quitting smoking at least two weeks before treatment. Nicotine can impair circulation and slow healing.
You should also avoid all intravaginal lubricants and creams for 24 hours. Likewise, you should skip sex the night before to ensure your tissues are properly prepared for treatment. You’ll need to drink plenty of water in the days leading up to treatment to stay well-hydrated, but you don’t need to fast. And last but not least, we recommend you avoid alcohol the day before. Alcohol dehydrates the body and thins the blood.
The Day of Treatment
We recommend that on the morning of treatment you shower or bathe so the treatment area is clean. You should not, however, apply any lotions, creams, or other substances that may interfere with the laser energy. Long pubic hair should be trimmed and choosing loose, comfortable clothing will help protect treated tissues from chafing.
You’ve made it through treatment – trust us, the MonaLisa is both gentle and pain-free – and now need some guidance on how to care for your vaginal area. We recommend no tampons or sexual intercourse for 48 hours. You should also gently cleanse the area two to three times a day with mild soap. A hairdryer on low heat can be used to dry the area, which is far less abrasive than wiping with a rough towel. Follow this protocol for about a week.
We additionally recommend you not lift heavy weights or engage in intense physical exercise for three days after treatment. Choose loose, cotton underwear (no thongs or silk) during this time and leave tight-fitting pants, tights, and pantyhose in your closet. We’ll let you know when you can resume your normal routine, but rest assured it won’t be long. We simply want to give your tissues a proper chance to recover.
How the MonaLisa Works
We would first like to say the MonaLisa Touch system is completely non-surgical. Treatment is delivered via an advanced CO2 laser that gently acts on vaginal walls to begin a process known as neocollagenesis. This is an elaborate way of saying treatment stimulates higher collagen production. The laser scanner essentially targets the collagen layer within your vaginal walls. That’s right – collagen is everywhere in the human body, including the vagina.
The collagen layer we’re talking about absorbs the scanner’s light energy and warms to a degree that exceeds your body’s normal temperature. This warming prompts the coagulation point, and once at this stage, the collagen layer develops tiny and invisible micro-lesions. The body responds by putting its healing system to work, meaning new collagen production starts. Meanwhile, the circulatory system flushes away old collagen to make room for the new.
One Treatment, Many Benefits
The formation of new collagen ignites a process that rebalances the structure and function of your vagina and surrounding areas. This means:
- Moisture returns to vaginal walls
- Normal pH levels resume
- The epithelium (cell layer) grows thicker and more elastic
- The vagina becomes tighter
What you’ll likely feel is greater comfort throughout the day and more pleasure during intercourse. Urinary incontinence may also diminish as tissues grow denser and sturdier. And with greater pH balance, you can look forward to a reduction in urinary tract infections.
What to Expect
You’ll find the MonaLisa Touch is similar to previous gynecological treatments you’ve had. In fact, you can liken it to a vaginal ultrasound. We’ll probably start your session by applying a lidocaine-based numbing cream. This ensures a comfortable, painless treatment. We’ll also provide you with special eye protection to wear while the laser is activated.
Once you feel prepared, we’ll insert the metal wand into your vagina. It may feel cool initially, and you’ll probably experience a vibrating or tingling sensation, but the warmth will quickly follow. Rest assured treatment proceeds smoothly and takes just five to 10 minutes to complete. We’ll likely apply a soothing ointment once we’ve targeted your internal and external tissues, and we’ll also provide a pad to protect your clothing.
Most women experience immediate results after treatment, although your body’s collagen synthesis will continue to amplify for one or two months. The number of treatments required depends on the severity of your symptoms. In most cases, a range of three to six treatments spaced about two months apart is recommended for maximum benefits.
Once you’ve finished your treatment plan, results can last for several years. The only need you may have during this time is an annual “top-up” session that maintains maximum results. We invite you at any time to discuss your progress with our staff to determine if additional treatments are necessary.
Frequently Asked Questions
Many women want to know the culprit behind so many changes to their vagina. In most cases, we can attribute these shifts to hormonal fluctuations that happen because of breastfeeding, menopause, cancer treatments, or hysterectomies.
As estrogen wanes, vaginal tissues become thinner and weaker and produce uncomfortable side effects like irritation, itching, and pain. Treatment is designed to improve your quality of life, ramp up your confidence, and help you enjoy greater intimacy with your spouse or partner.
Who Is a Suitable Candidate?
Any woman with vaginal atrophy or laxity caused by hormonal changes can likely find help from the MonaLisa. Vaginal atrophy refers to the drying, thinning, and inflammation of vaginal walls. This condition commonly occurs after menopause and explains why so many women experience painful intercourse and distressing urinary symptoms.
Now is the right time to mention that MonaLisa Touch treatment is ideal for women who do not want to undergo major surgery or potentially risky hormone replacement therapy – but do want relief from their symptoms. Keep in mind that MonaLisa is not associated with any dangerous or long-term side effects. It’s even safe for women with hormone-related cancers.
Is Anesthesia Required?
No, this treatment does not require anesthesia. Again, it’s virtually painless and causes no discomfort. Apart from a gentle vibration and changes in temperature, you likely will feel very little during treatment.
What Are the Benefits of Treatment?
Again, the MonaLisa system helps alleviate symptoms caused by estrogen deficiencies. By jumpstarting collagen production within the vaginal walls, treatment can restore function and stop the pain, irritation, and itching. In turn, patients tend to feel more comfortable and more confident.
What Is Recovery Like?
Treatment is so easy that you can plan to drive yourself to and from your appointment. Likewise, you can expect a simple recovery that requires you to simply follow our post-care instructions. You’ll be able to quickly resume your normal routine and results develop immediately.
Can Treatment Be Used to Correct Vaginal Laxity?
Let’s talk for a moment about the term “loose vagina,” or vaginal laxity. This refers to an increase in the vagina’s diameter and is typically caused either by traumatic events like giving birth or tissue relaxation owed to the natural aging process. The CO2 laser that comprises the MonaLisa system treats both instances to increase vaginal tone. In other words, treatment can indeed help to correct vaginal laxity.
Will Treatment Eliminate the Need for Lubricants?
Many women begin treating vaginal atrophy with moisturizers and lubricants. But products inserted into the vagina cause a mess and can diminish the spontaneity of intercourse. It’s therefore no wonder that most ladies don’t want to continue using over-the-counter lubricants.
The good news is that the MonaLisa supports healthy tissue growth, meaning you may be able to toss your lubricants into the garbage. At the very least, you can look forward to needing much less of these products – even during intercourse.
A Rejuvenating System
If you’re tired of coping with vaginal health concerns, you should explore treatment with the MonaLisa Touch Laser. Preparing for your appointment is a breeze, and after treatment, you simply need to follow our recommendations. Recovery is quick, and the benefits of treatment include tighter tissues, improved lubrication, and better urinary control. Schedule your consultation today by contacting Aurora OB-GYN in San Antonio, TX.