Volume: 2012 | Number: 1
ISSN (print): 1855-9913 | ISSN (web): 1855-9921
Novel Minimally Invasive VSP Er:YAG Laser Treatments in Gynecology
Zdenko Vizintin, Mario Rivera, Ivan Fistonić, Ferit Saraçoğlu, Paolo Guimares, Jorge Gaviria, Victor Garcia, Matjaz Lukac, Tadej Perhavec, Leonardo Marini
Some of the most common health problems among women that are caused by a deteriorating laxity, elasticity and tightness of mucous membranes are vaginal relaxation (and the associated loss of sexual gratification) and stress urinary incontinence. Recently, two novel minimally invasive, non-ablative Er:YAG laser techniques have been introduced, a vaginal tightening therapy IntimaLaseTM and a stress urinary incontinence therapy IncontiLaseTM, which show the potential to become an optimal solution for many women suffering from these problems. Both treatment techniques exploit the photothermal effect of a laser beam on mucosa tissue in order to cause its shrinkage without any removal of tissue. The overall impact and burden on the patient's organism is thus minimal, as opposed to more invasive classical or laser surgical procedures.
In this paper, a special Er:YAG Pixel Screen technology used in these novel gynecological treatments, and its ablative characteristics, are first analyzed with the aim to establish a range of laser parameters for safe, single-pulse or SMOOTH mode, non-ablative treatment of mucosa tissue. The initial results of multi-center clinical studies of the IntimaLaseTM and IncontiLaseTM treatments are then presented. All five centers involved in the studies of the IntimaLaseTM treatment reported positive results, i.e an improvement in vaginal tightness for a large majority of treated patients, with practically no adverse effects. Similarly, all four studies of the IncontiLaseTM treatment showed improvement in stress urinary incontinence (SUI) for a large majority of treated patients. Many patients with mild SUI reported to become free of the symptoms of incontinence following the treatment. There were no adverse effects of this treatment reported in any of the studies.
Based on these initial clinical results, the new IntimaLaseTM and IncontiLaseTM gynecological treatments are promising to become a minimally invasive solution of choice for many women suffering from vaginal relaxation syndrome or stress urinary incontinence.