Vaginal Rejuvenation Helps Women “Get Their Lives Back”

Dr. Dean Elterman, a urologist at University Health Network, performs “vaginal rejuvenation” for medical and cosmetic reasons.

Great coverage of the female genital procedures from the Toronto Star. Many of the questions we get from patients about Intimalase, OHIP coverage, and the cost are answered here. Get in touch with us with any further questions or to book a consultation.

Female genital procedures on the rise, but they’re not always cosmetic

“Labiaplasty is not normally covered by OHIP, though exceptions are considered if the repair is required because of an injury, says Ministry of Health spokesperson David Jensen.

More broadly, women coming in for female genital procedures are sometimes seeking treatment for urinary incontinence or laxity of the vaginal canal after childbirth, which could be hindering their sex life or making the region uncomfortable, Brown says.

In Jones’ case, she opted for the IncontiLase procedure, and says the roughly $2,500 cost was money well spent since the experience was largely pain-free. “I think that alone makes it so much better than having a surgical procedure where you have stitches and you’re recovering for six weeks,” Jones says.

The procedure involves two to three 20-minute laser sessions, in which a physician uses a speculum-type device to guide a laser to heat the tissue lining the vagina — and the collagen layer below — to tighten the region. It might be slightly uncomfortable, but not painful enough to require numbing gel, says Dr. Dean Elterman, the Toronto urologic surgeon who performed the procedure on Jones. (Elterman has financial ties to IncontiLase product provider Clarion Medical Technologies.)

”The pelvic floor — meaning the urethra, the vagina, the bladder — are all supported by a series of layers of collagen, muscles, and connective tissue,” says Elterman. “With childbirth, with age, with decreasing estrogen levels around menopause, you get laxity in the tissues.”

That can lead to bladder leakage, because there is no longer the same amount of support in the vaginal tissue below. Elterman likens it to a leaking garden hose: If you stand on the hose while it’s on a soft, muddy surface, you’ll never be able to fully compress it to stop the leak. “Whereas, if you’re standing on the hose and it’s on cement or concrete, you can actually squish the tube and it won’t leak.”

4 Vaginal Rejuvenation Myths Debunked



Vaginal-rejuvenation procedures are improving the lives of many women.

By Angela Serednicki

1) Myth: It’s All For Her Partner’s Pleasure

Truth: “It’s about the patient’s own sexual pleasure,” says Dr. Elterman.

Typically, patients ages 50 and up use a laser-therapy vaginal rejuvenation procedure called Intimalase as a way to fix the pain, dryness and elasticity issues that are associated with menopause and are a part of a woman’s natural aging process. The procedure enhances a woman’s vaginal muscle tone and increase sensitivity and sexual satisfaction.

Sexual satisfaction isn’t the only reason why women opt for vaginal rejuvenation procedures. Another laser therapy based procedure called Incontilase is designed for women with incontinence issues. In this procedure, the vaginal canal is tightened and shrunk in order to provide greater support to the bladder.

“Some women come in with a primary complaint (like bladder leakage) and find that the procedure treats another issue they were experiencing, such as laxity,” Elterman says.

Both Incontilase and Intimalase have more than a 90 percent satisfaction rate.

2) Myth: It’s Going to Hurt. A lot.

Truth: It’s pain-free.

Thanks to the use of laser therapy, a vaginal rejuvenation procedure is virtually pain-free. “No numbing or anesthetic is required,” says Dr. Elterman.

Vaginal rejuvenation procedures are done in a medical building with the presence of a doctor and two nurses. A very tiny speculum is then inserted into the vagina, which is followed by the light of the laser. Women may feel some heat when the laser is close to the opening of the vagina, but patients say that the discomfort is manageable.

3) Myth: Recovery Is Going to Be Killer.

Truth: The recovery is almost as simple as the procedure.

In order for the tissue to heal, women must abstain from intercourse for two weeks and shouldn’t wear tampons or avoid any heavy lifting for a month. Doctors sometimes prescribe a topical estrogen cream to help stimulate the body’s natural collagen to grow.

Since vaginal rejuvenation procedures are finished in less than half an hour, many women can even get the vaginal rejuvenation procedure done during their lunch break, says Dr. Elterman. “Within the hour, you’re back at your desk. There is virtually no recovery process,” he says.

4) Myth: It’s Not Necessary

Truth: While vaginal rejuvenation isn’t a life-saving procedure, it can greatly improve quality of life.

Jones has been experiencing severe bladder leaks ever since she had an extremely difficult forceps delivery and episiotomy with her firstborn.

When she was still in the hospital after giving birth, Jones says that she had no sensation in her bladder. “I would stand up and my bladder would completely let go,” she recalls. “I had no idea my bladder was even full.”

Two weeks later, she was referred to a physiotherapist for her bladder leaks. With the help of physiotherapy, Jones said her stress incontinence issues improved. “I couldn’t run, jump or sneeze, but it became manageable,” Jones said.

After five years of physiotherapy and a second pregnancy, her doctors said that she wouldn’t see any more improvement. At this point, Jones was still experiencing severe incontinence. Simple tasks like picking up her kids or crouching down in her classroom would result in leakage. Not wanting to wait 15 years before she was eligible for a bladder mesh sling operation, Jones decided to undergo an Incontilase laser therapy procedure, which shrinks and tightens vaginal tissue so that it can better support the bladder.

The procedure itself was really easy, says Jones. “I felt some heat during the procedure, but it was very manageable.” After undergoing two of the laser therapy sessions, Jones considers the procedure a success. “Now I can run, sneeze and have a full bladder without worrying about an accident.”

Vaginal Rejuvenation: The Latest Baby Boomer Health Trend

Feeling dry? Laser vaginal rejuvenation can help with post-menopausal vaginal atrophy symptoms.
Feeling dry? Laser vaginal rejuvenation can help with post-menopausal atrophy symptoms.
Some medi-spas have begun promoting laser treatments as the cure for vaginal dryness and other age-related vaginal atrophy symptoms. Laser is our treatment of choice for vaginal rejuvenation but it should be approached with care: a professional medical diagnosis is a must. Before you opt for laser vaginal rejuvenation, do yourself a favor and see a doctor, not an aesthetician.

The once very private topic of post-menopausal vaginal atrophy is having a moment.

Women of a certain age are asking their doctors to treat dryness, painful intercourse and incontinence at the same time makers of prescription medicines, over-the-counter moisturizers and even specialized vaginal lasers are being aggressively marketed…

The other laser approved to treat GSM in Canada is the Fotona Dynamis which is also used for facial treatments. There are 14 machines in B.C. — seven in Metro Vancouver, according to its distributor — which can be used to perform procedures marketed as IncontiLase and IntimaLase, mostly in medi-spas.

Toronto urologist Dr. Dean Elterman is using it (Intimalase) in his practise to treat incontinence and GSM and says it’s important for women to be examined by a specialist before turning to laser therapy.

“Do they have stress incontinence, do they have atrophy, does something look abnormal like a cancer? A trained eye who’s doing the assessment as well as the treatment is important, I think,” Elterman said in a phone interview.

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