The systemic symptoms of menopause such as hot flashes, mood changes, and sleep disturbances, will slowly improve over time for most women. But, unfortunately, the pelvic symptoms of menopause will only worsen over time.
The tissues of the vagina and bladder are responsive to estrogen, and every year they go without estrogen they become more thin and less functional. When these tissues lose function, patients can experience vaginal or vulvar itching or burning, dryness, pain with intercourse, urinary incontinence, recurrent urinary tract infections, and more.
One way to treat atrophy is vaginal estrogen. The benefit of putting estrogen into the vagina is that only a minimal amount is absorbed into the system, the goal being focused estrogen absorption. If you have never had a personal history of breast cancer or a blood clot, you are a candidate for vaginal estrogen.
The second option for treatment of atrophy is a vaginal laser. We use the MonaLisa Touch laser. The treatment consists of three laser treatments, 6 weeks apart, with a yearly maintenance one time treatment boost. The laser causes microscopic damage to the tissue, with which the body feels it needs to bring in collagen and this will mechanically thicken the tissue. If you have never had pelvic mesh or pelvic radiation, you are a candidate for the laser.
It is important to understand that women in menopause we will never make estrogen again. So, developing a lifelong maintenance plan for vaginal health will keep the tissues strong, functioning, and comfortable, for the best quality of life.
Frequently Asked Questions
Women with gynecologic health concerns.
The SmartXide Touch Laser (MonaLisa Touch) is indicated for incision, excision, ablation, vaporization and coagulation of body soft tissues in medical specialties including aesthetic (dermatology and plastic surgery), podiatry, otolaryngology (ENT), gynecology, neurosurgery, orthopedics, general and thoracic surgery (including open and endoscopic), dental and oral surgery and genitourinary surgery. Use with the scanning unit is indicated for ablative skin resurfacing.
Like all medical procedures, not all patients are suitable. Our team at Bradley
Gynecology will review the risks and benefits of MonaLisa Touch.
What can I expect with the procedure?
This is a well-tolerated in-office procedure that typically does not require anesthesia and only lasts about 5 minutes.
Please click here to learn more about side-effects.
What can I expect after the procedure?
Patients can return to normal activities but should refrain from sexual activity for 2-3
days. Your doctor will determine a post-procedure regimen that is right for you.
How much will the procedure cost?
Patients should contact their MonaLisa Touch provider for additional information.
Will the procedure be covered by insurance?
No procedural codes have been established, this is a cash pay procedure paid directly to your provider.
How does it work?
MonaLisa Touch uses fractional laser technology to ablate small micro-columns of tissue. This leaves an ecosystem of healthy unaffected tissue to support rapid healing.
Where can I have this done?
Laser sessions are conveniently performed right here in our office during a routine outpatient appointment.
How long will it last?
Everyone is unique and our skin ages pre and post-procedure. You and your physician should discuss your needs and expectations.