The MonaLisa Touch™ laser treatment is a non-hormonal, outpatient procedure to treat the effects of vulvovaginal atrophy.
Vaginal dryness, or atrophy causes poor lubriction, recurrent infections and painful intercourse. This leads to a reduction in sexual satisfaction and intimacy issues.
Many women suffer the effects of vaginal dryness and are embarrased to seek help or mention this to their doctor.
Effects of reduced or low oestrogen on the genital tract
- mechanical trauma to the genital tract during intercourse due to thinning of the vaginal lining
- vaginal dryness and a lack of lubrication which causes friction and pain during intercourse
- decrease in vaginal lactobacilli and a change in the vaginal acidity which promotes recurrent thrush and urinary tract infrections
What does the MonaLisa Touch™ treatment do ?
- genital regeneration which improves the blood flow to the vaginal tissue. This causes deeper tissue to regenerate into healthy tissue with imrpoved hydration
- reduces symptoms of dryness, superficial and deep intercourse pain, recurrent infections, abnormal vaginal discharge and sometimes vaginal bleeding as a result of atrophic changes.
How does the MonaLisa Touch™ laser work ?
MonaLisa Touch™ uses fractional treatmet with a CO2 laser. This causes rejuvination of the vaginal lining. MonaLisa Touch™ does this by:
- promoting fibroblast activity and collegen synthesis (cells and structures that give the vagina its normal thickness)
- improving blood flow to the vaginal lining
- increasing fibroblastic activity and blood flow that contribute to better hydration of the tissues
- promoting glycogen synthesis which is important for lactobacillli in the vagina to produce lactic acid and reduce recurrent thrush
What conditions are suitable for treatment with the MonaLisa Touch™?
- vaginal dryness that causes painful intercourse (dyspareunia)
- as a result of age related menopause
- in women with breast cancer (eg those on Tamoxifen) and are not suitable for vaginal oestrogen use
- breast feeding mothers who experience vaginal dryness
- vaginal laxity
- due to advancing age, prolapse or as a result of chidbirth (with more vaginal births, this symptom increases). There is a relaxation in the vaginal tissues that diminishes sexual satisfaction causing a loss of sensation.
- urinary incontinence
- early urinary incontinence and urgency associated with menopause
- stress urinary incontinence as a result of vaginal births due to injury or overstretching of the nerves, ligaments and pelvic floor muscles
- dyspareunia (painful intercourse)
- due to birthing related issues - episiotomies, perineal tears or instrumental deliveries
- due to postpartum vaginal dryness as a result of breastfeeding
- due to menopause related dryness and friction
- other uses include:
- recurrent UTI
- recurrent thrush outbreaks
- lichen sclerosis (after a thorough examianton including biopsy and topical steroid creams)
- Minor degree vaginal prolapses not suitable for surgery or a pessary use
What checks are done before I know if I am suitable for MonaLisa Touch™?
You will have a full history taken and examination done. Any specific conditions that need attention will be addressed before determining that you are suitable for this treatment.
Your initial evaluation may include an internal examination, colposcopy and possible a baseline internal transvaginal ultrasound.
You will need to sign a consent form
We invite all our patients to fill a questionnaire (The Australian Pelvic Floor Questionnaire - International Urogynaecological Association 2009).
How many treatments are needed ?
Usually three treatments, 4-6 weeks apart and a further single session 12 months later. Some conditions will need additional treatments depending on the condition.
What happens during my MonaLisa Touch™ treatment?
- the MonaLisa Touch laser procedure is a minimally invasive, outpatient proedure that requires no incisions or anaesthetic.
- it normally takes 10-20 minutes.
- You will be given a pair of laser safety glasses to wear
- the vaginal area is claned and dried with a swab.
- the laser probe is then inserted into the vagina gently. Expect some minor discomfort at first if there is severe vaginal atrophy. It is important to tell your doctor if you experience unbearable pain or discomfort.
- You may feel a gentle vibration as the laser is emitted. The probe is gradually withdrawn as the laser delivers a 360oscan until the probe is completely removed
- we will discuss your post laser care and provide you with relevant post procedure instructions
Possible side effects
- these are usually temporary and not everyone will experience them. These include slight reddening and minor swelling after a session. These resolve within 1-2 days
- rarely, you may experience slight vaginal bleeding which resolves within 24 hours
- patients with low immunity that have a low defence system may experience lymph node enlargement in the groin. This is temporary as well.
Post laser care
- wear cotton underwear and avoid synthetic materials
- ensure your undergarments are loose fitting
- avoid tight trousers
- avoid hot baths and shower douches
- avoid heavy lifting and physical excercise for 4 -5 days following treatment
- no intercourse or tampon use for a week following treatment
For more information on MonaLisa Touch™, click here.
View the peer-reviewed scientific papers supporting the use of MonaLisa Touch™.