Impact of microablative fractional radiofrequency on the vaginal health, microbiota, and cellularity of postmenopausal women
Keywords:Menopause, Radiofrequency, Dyspareunia, Orgasm, Therapeutics
OBJECTIVES: We aimed to evaluate the effectiveness of microablative fractional radiofrequency (MAFRF) in the non-hormonal treatment of genitourinary syndrome of menopause. METHODS: We examined the cases of 55 postmenopausal women before and after treatment with regard to their vaginal health index (VHI), vaginal microbiota, vaginal pH, and cell maturation. Three applications of MAFRF were performed in the vagina/vaginal introitus. During the treatment, six vaginal smears were obtained and stained with the Papanicolaou stain for determining the degree of cell maturation and with Gram stain for classification of vaginal flora, as per the criteria of Spiegel and Amsel. For vaginal pH determination, pH indicator strips were applied against the vaginal wall. Statistical analysis was performed using SPSS for Windows (version 17.0). Data were reported as mean±standard deviation. The differences were analyzed using the statistical method of generalized estimation equations with autoregressive correlation structure ‘‘1’’ and robust standard errors. RESULTS: The mean age was 59.8±4.2 years, and the mean time of menopause was 15.4±4.5 years. After treatment, there was an increase in the percentage of Lactobacillus spp. (po0.001). Consequently, there was a progressive decrease in vaginal pH during the treatment (po0.001). Regarding cell maturation, there was a decrease in the percentage of parabasal cells (p=0.001) and an increase in the rate of superficial cells (po0.001). Additionally, there was an improvement in the VHI index. The mean VHI values before and after treatment were 13.2±5.6 and 22.5±3.7, respectively (po0.001). CONCLUSION: MAFRF treatment is well tolerated and leads to improvement in the vaginal microenvironment.