Many women put up with a variety of symptoms which can affect their quality of life, particularly when it comes to the menopause. Troublesome vaginal symptoms may be difficult to discuss and women can be hesitant in seeking advice and treatment. Whether you are embarrassed or think only hormonal treatments can help, you now have another choice: MonaLisa Touch.
With the help of one of our consultant gynaecologists you can now choose a hormone-free, surgery-free and painless treatment to manage some of your intimate symptoms.
Falling levels of the oestrogen hormone can cause the vaginal walls to thin, lose elasticity and become drier. Known as vaginal atrophy this leads to unpleasant symptoms such as intimate dryness, burning, soreness, itching and irritation. For many women this means uncomfortable or even painful sexual intercourse. You may also experience urinary frequency and ‘leaks’, for example when sneezing or coughing.
What Is MonaLisa Touch?
MonaLisa Touch is a new laser treatment that improves most vaginal symptoms associated with thinning of the vaginal walls. It is a medical treatment (not a cosmetic one) with many advantages: a short and mostly pain-free procedure, it does not require any anaesthetic, has very minimal risk and very few temporary side effects.
Sometimes described as the laser ‘female dryness cure’, MonaLisa Touch helps to restore thinning vaginal walls to a more youthful and moist state.
It is an important new treatment that can significantly improve your quality of life. In one study, 17 out of 20 women who were not sexually active because of menopause-related vaginal symptoms returned to a normal sex life within 12 weeks of a course of MonaLisa Touch.
The Cleveland Clinic, one of America's top five hospitals, has published more about Energy-Based treatments and you can learn more here.
Who can benefit from Mona Lisa Touch treatment?
After the menopause or ‘perimenopause’ women can experience a host of symptoms, both physical and emotional. Intimate symptoms include dryness, itching, burning and often lead to painful intercourse. In turn, this can adversely affect intimate relationships.
As many as 1 in 3 postmenopausal women experience pain during intercourse. A recent survey in the USA showed that a majority of women were not well informed about painful sex and its link to the menopause and didn’t know that it is treatable. Furthermore many women never discuss painful intercourse with their doctor or healthcare provider.
Some women do not wish to take oestrogen and others simply cannot, in particular after having breast cancer. MonaLisa Touch can also help women to recover elasticity after giving birth.
Another condition which can improve with a course of MonaLisa Touch treatment is urinary ‘leaks’ (mild urinary incontinence) or urinary frequency. It is also thought that recurrent urinary tract infections (UTIs) happen more often when the vaginal walls are thinner due to low oestrogen levels. So restoring the vaginal mucosa to its “normal condition” might have a positive effect on UTIs.
What happens during treatment?
First, your gynaecologist will assess your symptoms and perform a gentle internal examination. This will confirm whether or not your symptoms are due to vaginal atrophy and whether you are suitable for the treatment.
Your doctor will then explain your treatment options and how MonaLisa Touch can help. If laser treatment is right for your personal needs and circumstances, then a course of three sessions will be planned into your normal menopause care.
The MonaLisa Touch laser delivers a pulse of energy via a probe which is gently inserted into the vagina, rather like having a transvaginal ultrasound. The laser light stimulates the vaginal walls and restores tissues to a more youthful thickness, elasticity and level of moisture.
Each treatment lasts just a few minutes and is painless. You may notice slight discomfort afterwards, but this is usually minimal.
During the healing process, it’s recommended that you wait 3 to 4 days before resuming sexual activity.
How many treatments are needed?
To treat vaginal atrophy, three MonaLisa Touch treatments are recommended, spaced four to six weeks apart. Many women notice significant improvement in symptoms after their first treatment but, for full tissue regeneration, a course of three treatments is needed. An annual maintenance treatment will then provide continuing symptom relief.
In some rare cases, an initial course of five treatments is needed but your chosen gynaecologist will advise you on what is best in your circumstances.
How much does it cost?
The fee for the initial consultation/assessment with Ms Tania Adib or Mr Pandelis Athanasias is £250. You then have two choices: Individual sessions (£650 each); or a treatment package (£1,800 for 3 sessions payable at the time of the consultation, a saving of £150).
We advise an annual maintenance/top up session which will cost £650.
Offering MonaLisa Touch in London
We now offer MonaLisa Touch with our private consultant gynaecologists at The Medical Chambers Kensington. To find out more, please telephone 020 7244 4200 and we will be happy to answer your questions, or make an appointment online.
Issues of gynaecologic health are commonly seen in post-menopausal women, breast cancer survivors and women who have had a hysterectomy. In the US, as many as 50% of 64 million post-menopausal women suffer from changes to their gynecologic health*, and over 2.8M breast cancer survivors**.
* US Census, 2010 ** National Institutes of Health 2011
The following histological images show the vaginal mucosa before and after the MonaLisa Touch treatment. The marked change to the epithelium post-treatment is clearly illustrated.
Histological preparation of a section of the vaginal mucosa stained with haematoxylin and eosin (H&E). (A) Vaginal mucosa in the basal condition with a thinner epithelium. (B) The same patient 2 months after a session with the MonaLisa Touch®. The thicker epithelium and shedding of numerous big cells from the free surface, together with the larger diameter of epithelial cells rich in glycogen, demonstrate the restored metabolic trophism and dynamics of the whole epithelium. [Courtesy of Prof. A. Calligaro. University of Pavia, Italy]