A GUIDE TO THE MONALISA TOUCH™ TREATMENT
MonaLisa Touch™ is a vaginal rejuvenation treatment based on a special CO2 fractional laser, specifically created by scientists in Tuscany, Italy for this particular application.
This non-invasive laser procedure is performed in a medical office; it does not involve incisions or sutures and it requires under five minutes for every session.
The treatment DOES NOT usually require anesthesia; however, if the vaginal opening is especially sensitive or tight, we can apply a topical anesthetic.
Results can be noticed after the first session; normally we recommend a full cycle of 3 sessions 45-60 days apart. However, the number of sessions can change according to the level of vaginal atrophy to be treated. A yearly maintenance session is recommended.
The laser’s stimulation action on collagen improves the state of the mucosa that lines the vaginal walls and promotes rehydration and functional recovery of the vaginal tissues.
Thanks to its action on factors that determine dryness, fragility and loss of mucosal elasticity, this regenerating treatment can eliminate troublesome itching, irritation and pain, which become particularly acute during intercourse. As a result, most of the treated patients report a substantial improvement in their quality of life and in their sexual life.
The MonaLisa Touch™ even treats cases of mild vaginal looseness, caused by loss of mucosal tone (but not significant prolapse due to muscle or soft tissue laxity).
This stimulation and rejuvenation process involves growth of cells and tissues and takes a few weeks to be completed. Results will be more noticeable approximately 4-6 weeks after the end of the treatment.
Risks for patients treated with Monalisa Touch™ are minimal. Few women report temporary side effects of slight redness or swelling if the outer vulvar area is treated. Any discomfort usually disappears after one or two days.
Generally intercourse may be resumed after 24-48 hours.
Please contact our office to set up your initial consultation.
How does the MonaLisa Touch™ Treatment work exactly?
MonaLisa Touch™ works by stimulating the body’s own regenerative processes to create more hydrated and healthy cells and to improve the vascularity of the vaginal mucosa. This has a direct effect on the integrity and elasticity of the vaginal wall and increases the acidity of the vaginal environment to more normal levels. In general terms MonaLisa Touch™ improves the function and health of the vagina.
The treatment activates fibroblasts of the vaginal mucosa which promotes collagen synthesis. The permeability of the tissues and the transfer of water and nutrients from the capillaries are also improved, allowing normal water content of the vaginal mucosa which restore the vaginal wall strength and blood supply. In as little as 30 days after the treatment the regeneration of new tissue in the vaginal walls builds a naturally stronger structure and the protective mucosa recovers volume, hydration and elasticity.
Contributing Factors to Vaginal Atrophy Symptoms
The reduction of estrogen production in the ovaries after menopause is the most recognized cause of vaginal atrophy. This results in a reduction of collagen in the vaginal mucosa and thinning of the epithelium, which makes the vagina more susceptible to trauma during intercourse. A concomitant reduction in blood flow leads to a decrease in vaginal secretions often leading to a dry vagina. This in turn decreases the lactobacilli bacteria of the vagina which results in an increased pH level, facilitating the growth of pathogens including bacteria. This can result in an unpleasant vaginal odor and discharge These symptoms can have a negative effect on your general well-being and, in many cases place stress on your intimate relationships.
Treatment of vaginal atrophy can start before the occurrence of vaginal changes, in the peri-menopause, and even post-partum, when estrogen levels are low or fluctuating.
Existing Treatment Options
Currently the most-common treatment of vaginal atrophy requires an ongoing application of hormone replacement products directly into the vagina, in the form of estrogen creams, melting pills or a ring, or taking an oral pill with potential side effects (Osephna). For a variety of reasons some women are not able to use these products, become uncomfortable with this process, suffer side effects, or are irregular with their use and eventually stop.
Without an effective solution these women are forced to alter their lifestyle to cope with the symptoms.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is the MonaLisa Touch™ safe?
Yes. Fractional CO2 laser has been commonly used in the medical field for decades. MonaLisa Touch™ is a CO2 laser that serves as a non-surgical alternative to vaginal tightening that gently stimulates the natural collagen found within the vaginal walls. Subsequently there is no surgery and no recovery time involved.
When should I seek treatment?
Treatment is indicated in the postpartum period, in the peri-menopause, and post-menopause.
Am I a candidate for vaginal rejuvenation?
If you are in good general health, have a positive attitude and realistic expectations, you are most likely a good candidate for this procedure. Some common reasons you may want to consider vaginal rejuvenation include:
- Your vaginal structure, specifically your vaginal walls, have altered and stretched over time due to aging, weight change or pregnancy
- If you experience soreness or pain during sexual activity
- If you have discomfort from scarring as a result of previous genital surgeries
- If the effects of multiple vaginal deliveries with childbirth have led to reduced sensation during intercourse.
- If you have any of the symptoms listed under “genitourinary syndrome of menopause”: vaginal dryness, vaginal itching, vaginal burning, frequent bladder infections, painful intercourse, urgency of urination, less lubrication
- You can have comfortable intercourse, but not for very long before you become dry or sore
How many treatments will it take to see the results?
The number of treatments depends on your individual circumstance, however, some patients, may only require one treatment to see sufficient results. In the case of stress urinary incontinence, the treatment may need to be repeated for a total of 3 or 4 times.
What is involved in the procedure?
The Mona Lisa Touch™ works to counteract the effects of Vaginal Atrophy with a simple 10-minute treatment, utilizing a highly sophisticated vaginal probe to deliver microscopic heat beams that gently and safely stimulate the production of collagen underneath the vaginal skin. This in turn, promotes a proliferation of the cells and restores the vaginal wall strength and blood supply.
How is the recovery?
Most women report no side effects whatsoever. A few women report slight localized discomfort at the opening following the laser treatment and during the first few days after the session. Many have reported to have resumed their normal routine after 1-3 days.
Are there any risks involved?
There are some minimal risks. The treatment is performed in the office. Few women report temporary side effects, slight redness or swelling: some discomfort that usually disappears after one or two days of rest.
Why is the MonaLisa Touch™ a desirable alternative over other vaginal rejuvenation methods?
The MonaLisa Touch™ procedure offers significant advantages over other available current treatment options as it addresses the issues that cause Vaginal Atrophy, rather than masking the symptoms. Many women feel doubtful and uncertain with regards to traditional treatment (surgical or pharmacological), which is often invasive and poses some high risks of significant side effects. Patients who opt for the MonaLisa Touch™ not only benefit from a gentle and non-surgical alternative, but also from the longer-lasting relief it provides.
How does the MonaLisa Touch™ differ from surgical vaginal rejuvenation procedures?
The term “vaginal rejuvenation” is confusing because it is often used to include surgically altering the size and shape of the external genitalia (labia minora and majora), more appropriately called labiaplasty. Surgical vaginal rejuvenation usually means cutting away excess tissue and making the vagina tighter with suturing (anterior/posterior colporraphy or A and P Repair). These are generally performed in operating rooms, not in the office.
Why do some websites show labial reduction photos and call it vaginal rejuvenation?
The intelligence of women has often been underestimated, and for some reason there are gynecologists out there that think women cannot learn to tell the difference between their outside genitalia (labia) and their inside (vagina).
Please don’t confuse the two and don’t just give up and call it all vee-jay-jay. lol.
How does MonaLisa Touch™ differ from other vaginal rejuvenation lasers available in the United States?
As of January, 2015, MonaLisa Touch™ is the only laser that has significant published research in peer-reviewed journals to back up its efficacy, as well as as the clinical experience of its use in multiple countries, including Australia.
Currently over 30,000 women worldwide have been treated.
Is there anyone who shouldn’t have a MonaLisa Touch™ procedure done?
There are very few women who should avoid this procedure, but that would include pregnant women, within 3 months postpartum, if there is active infection, such as herpes or yeast, a history of local radiation therapy to the area, or a history of vaginal surgery with mesh placement.
Will the MonaLisa Touch™ procedure tighten my loose vagina?
Many women and their partners report a “tighter sensation” after MonaLisa Touch™ treatments. The MonaLisa Touch™ does improve cases of mild vaginal looseness, caused by loss of mucosal tone, but not significant prolapse due to muscle or soft tissue laxity.
What are the chances that sex will improve?
Ah, this is the 64 million dollar question. But my answer is a resounding “very likely.” The reasoning is this: It is a well established fact that libido for a female is directly related to comfort during sex. This is a no-brainer really…if something hurts we generally stop doing it. But if we can make it STOP hurting, and well, even go a step further and enhance lubrication and make it actually pleasurable, then it stands to reason that libido will improve.
Are there any special Aftercare Instructions?
You can resume all activities after 24 hours. Most women find that they can comfortably resume sexual intercourse within 24-48 hours. Remarkably some women who were totally unable to have intercourse prior to the procedure were able to comfortably do so one week later!