In 1973, I came to Canada, ostensibly for only a year. My objective was to return to Britain to pursue a career in obstetrics and gynecology. I fell in love with Canada and what I could do here so decided to not return to Britain but to continue my work as a physician here. While in Britain, I had gone through significant surgical and obstetric training. As a General Practitioner here, I delivered many babies by the natural route and by the surgical route (Caesarian Section) until I stopped that part of my practice about 10 years ago. This experience allowed me to witness the incredible forces placed on the female pelvis during pregnancy and particularly during labour. I would often wonder how on earth normal function could be restored after a particularly difficult labour and delivery. Sadly, for many women, they do not return to normal function. The tissues heal but the damage to the muscles and the ligaments of the pelvis will often not return to their pre pregnancy normal. This laxity can result in difficulty holding urine, often with minimal effort such as getting out of a chair. Stitches from the delivery can leave a painful scar at the vaginal opening causing pain during intercourse. The laxity can also reduce sensitivity during these intimate times. This is a very common problem yet the majority of women do not talk about it and just put up with it. They will reduce their activity to prevent leaking or wear bulky diaper like protectors to prevent soiling clothes. And, in spite of our more liberal and informed society, the bedroom remains a secret place that many are embarrassed to talk about. So the discomfort goes on until it gets bad enough to seek surgical remedy. But this doesn’t have to be so. Today there are physiotherapists who specialize in pelvic floor conditions and can offer many forms of treatment and exercises that can benefit these problems. In 2014, I was introduced to a laser which was new to Canada but had been developed in Europe 5 years previously, that would treat the female pelvic floor without injury, by stimulating the growth of new collagen resulting in tightening of the pelvic tissues. This was a painless treatment with no downtime that impressed me so much that I bought one. In the past 4 years this has treated many women of varying ages, all of whom have derived at least some benefit and most derived significant benefit. For many years, we have used platelet rich plasma, a product of our own blood, to help repair damaged muscles and tendons such as rotator cuff injuries. Dr. Charles Runels in Alabama reckoned that if it repairs soft tissues, why would it not work on the genital tissue as well. This is how he developed what is now called the O-shot. The concentrated platelets, derived from your own blood, are injected into the pelvic tissues which stimulates a repair process in these tissues. This was found to be of significant benefit for urine leakage. Now, we often combine the two treatments of laser and O-shot and can get quite impressive results in the strength of the pelvic tissue with a non-surgical treatment. Just recently, the FDA brought out a statement warning against certain vaginal devices because of injury being caused from them. They have listed the devices of concern and I am pleased to say that the Fotona Incontilase laser has not been a concern. The individual, however, should make a point of checking this list before committing to any vaginal rejuvenation procedure. Apart from that warning, it is nice to know that there are options that are not surgical, that can help to relieve the discomfort and embarrassment that is such a common issue after childbirth. If you have any of these concerns, you are very welcome to arrange a consultation with me to review your concerns and to help decide on an appropriate plan of action.
Before and After Bikini Line, Chin and Jawline
From the Desk of Anna ...
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