I am delighted to have been invited as a keynote speaker at the European Society of Aesthetic Gynaecology World Congress in London on 28th April 2018. I have been asked to present ground-breaking research I carried out on vaginal laxity.
Why did I carry out this research?
I see many women at my gynaecology clinic who report a feeling of vaginal laxity or looseness during sex which can impact significantly on sexual function. Until very recently, this common symptom has been under-reported by patients and overlooked by doctors. Vaginal laxity is sometimes accompanied by a prolapse, whereby the pelvic organs (bladder, bowel, womb) can slip into the vagina causing a bulge to appear. In these cases, I would usually recommend a ‘repair’ operation to remove the bulge and tighten the vagina.
Some women experience vaginal laxity but don’t have a prolapse. In the majority of cases in the NHS, the only treatment available is pelvic floor exercises but unfortunately these don’t always work. Very little is known about vaginal laxity such as how common it is and what impact it has on a woman’s quality of life. I therefore decided to investigate this problem in women who attended my clinics.
Who carried out this research?
I carried out this research in Sheffield, during my specialist training in urogynaecology. I collaborated with a team of specialists including Dr Michael Krychman, a world-renowned sexual medicine expert based in California.
What were the results?
Over 2500 women who attended specialist pelvic floor clinics were investigated for vaginal laxity. I found that almost 1 in 3 women reported vaginal laxity and this caused just as much impact on quality of life as other symptoms of pelvic floor dysfunction such as incontinence and prolapse. (Once the study has been published in a scientific journal I will be able to share the rest of the results with you.)
How has this research influenced my practice?
I recognised that vaginal laxity can cause significant problems for many of the women who attend my clinic. Through my collaboration with Dr Michael Krychman, I am delighted to have brought a new cutting-edge treatment for vaginal laxity from California to Ireland. The Viveve Treatment (previously Geneveve by Viveve®) has been clinically proven to treat vaginal laxity in one painless 30-minute treatment session. What’s more is that this treatment can also treat stress incontinence too.