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Vaginal laxity: Symptoms, causes and treatment

By Dr. Nadia Yousri, OB&GY Surgeon & Sexual Wellness & Regenerative Aesthetic Gynaecology Consultant, FRCOG, MRCOG, PhD, MSc, DFSRH

In her latest International Conference 2023, the highly experienced OB-GYN surgeon Dr Nadia Yousri offers her expert insight into vaginal laxity. She explains what causes this condition, as well as the different treatment options available.

The Vagina

The vagina, akin to (as are all parts of the body) a marvel of nature, is composed of highly elastic muscles. These muscles, much like rubber, return to their original position after being stretched. However, certain factors can cause these muscles and other vaginal tissues to lose their tightness, leading to vaginal laxity. A relaxation of the vaginal tissue characterises this condition, its supporting structures and a loss of tonicity of the vaginal wall. It’s often seen as a symptom of pelvic floor dysfunction and can be an indicator of a diminished quality of life.

The primary causes behind vaginal laxity are childbirth, due to the overstretching of tissues and birth-related injuries, and hormonal changes, especially during menopause. A decline in Oestrogen levels, vital for maintaining tissue strength and elasticity, can exacerbate the condition.

Symptoms of Vaginal Laxity:

  • Stress urinary incontinence (leakage during physical activities like laughing or running)
  • Increased bladder urgency
  • Reduced vaginal sensitivity leading to sexual dissatisfaction
  • Orgasmic dysfunction
  • Faecal urgency or incontinence
  • Prolapse or sagging of the vaginal wall in later life

Age-Related Effects in the Vaginal Area:

  • Vaginal atrophy leading to wall shortening and narrowing
  • Contraction and loss of the clitoral body
  • Flattening or parting of the outer labia
  • Loss of collagen and elastin fibres
  • Thinning of the vaginal wall lining
  • Decreased lactobacilli leading to increased susceptibility to infections
  • Reduced blood flow and decreased hyaluronic acid content

Vaginal Laxity Treatment Options:

Conservative Options:

These include Oestrogen supplementation and pelvic floor exercises.

Surgical Procedures:

Effective but invasive, surgery requires general anaesthesia and has a recovery period of at least six weeks.

Non-Surgical Procedures:

  • Non-surgical vaginal rejuvenation is gaining traction. This approach uses energy-based devices or plasma injections to stimulate the body’s regeneration of healthier tissues.
  • The O-Shot/G-Spot (Plasma Injection): This non-surgical option must be performed by a certified gynaecologist.
  • Hyaluronic Acid Augmentation: A non-surgical procedure ideal for treating menopausal atrophy, vaginal dryness, and other age-related changes.
  • Use of Energy Devices: Devices like lasers or high-frequency devices should be used by experienced gynaecologists to avoid complications.

In summary:

Vaginal laxity can significantly impact a woman’s quality of life. However, various treatments, from conservative to surgical and non-surgical, are available. It’s vital to consult with a fully experienced gynaecologist to determine the best approach to treatment.

Dr Nadia is one of the leading experts in vaginal laxity. Contact her today to arrange a consultation if you are experiencing vaginal laxity and would like to find out how she can help you.