Sponsored by Lasering USA
I have been a board certified OB/GYN for 30 years. About 12 years ago, I began transitioning towards becoming an aesthetic practice, and for the last five years, I’ve had cash-only clinics in two different locations.
As a gynecologist, I was very interested in bringing vaginal rejuvenation into my practice, as I knew at least 50% of post-menopausal women have issues with pelvic relaxation and stress urinary incontinence (SUI). The vast majority of these women’s symptoms are not serious enough for surgical correction, yet it interferes with their daily life functions and, often, their sexual intimacy.
This is a huge, untapped patient base. In addition, since traditional medicine has offered very little other than Kegel exercises to this group, many patients are open to looking to other sources for relief of their symptoms, and as a consequence, aesthetic providers have been able to step in and fill this void.
My criteria for all device purchases are: they must be effective and also efficient, with the least amount of patient discomfort and down-time. In looking for a vaginal rejuvenation platform that would meet these criteria and work best in an aesthetic clinic, I knew I did not want to perform ablative procedures.
I was uncomfortable with the subsequent wounds they created, the recovery period with discharge, the potential for infection (for both the patient and myself as the provider due to the smoke plume), and the necessary follow-up exams – none of which fits well in an aesthetic setting.
Radiofrequency (RF) and laser-based technologies are the two general modalities for vaginal rejuvenation. Both utilize heat to cause an increase in tissue temperature leading to the desired tissue remodeling. Histologic studies have been done showing that the wanted effect can be obtained with either modality, the main difference being in the amount of temperature and the length of time it is applied to tissue (Graph 1).
When using RF, a much longer time is required to achieve the desired tissue temperatures versus a laser, which causes almost instantaneous heating. The RF systems, while non- ablative, are time consuming and messy; and I am not confident in the uniformity of the vaginal tissue temperature.
Looking at CO2 laser-based systems, I found the only non-ablative device to be the MiXto V-Lase® from Lasering USA (San Ramon, Calif.). The CO2 laser is the gold standard for tissue rejuvenation and remodeling, so I was very happy to see that their patented chopped CW technology delivered the required thermal effect, without ablating tissue.
This made the V-Lase system by far the best fit for me. It is affordable, takes around 15 to 20 minutes to do, is very safe, provides uni- form treatment of the vaginal canal, can treat the external labia and can be combined with other treatments, such as the O-shot.
As a gynecologist, I have been very impressed with the results. I have had almost 100% patient improvement and satisfaction. Most cases of SUI have resolved after a single treatment. In addition, I get the added benefit of a CO2 fractional laser for facial treatments, which provides an additional stream of income.
About the author
Monte Slater, MD, FACOG, ABAARM
Dr. Slater is a double board certified physician (OB/GYN, anti-aging and regenerative medicine), specializing in anti-aging, aesthetics and Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy, with a focus on female and male rejuvenation. He has over 33 years of experience as a physician and surgeon. He opened his first medspa in 2007 and is the medical director of Aesthetic Body Sculpture Clinic & Center of Anti-Aging, which has two locations in Georgia. His Atlanta-based medspa has won awards such as Buckhead’s Best Medspa in 2018 and 2019. He has been on the Over 40 and Fabulous Advisory Board for Atlanta’s Best Self Magazine as the feminine rejuvenation expert for the past two years, and has spoken about V-Lase efficacy around the U.S.