Vaginal health is a very sensitive topic tied to, among many things, intimacy. Vaginal tightness, appearance and orgasmic function can have a profound impact on one’s relationships and self-esteem. Labiaplasty and vaginoplasty can improve appearance and tightness, but require surgery and may not specifically improve orgasmic function.
Recently, physicians have developed technologies that use laser or radiofrequency energy to rejuvenate vaginal tissues. ThermiVa is a non-invasive radiofrequency technology that can dramatically improve vaginal tightening, moisture and can also treat stress incontinence. While ThermiVa can improve orgasmic function, there is a new procedure that can, as a stand-alone treatment or combined with ThermiVa, dramatically augment sexual arousal.
Whether you’re someone who is comfortable talking about orgasms with your physician, the problem of being unable to achieve one is not new. Women everywhere suffer from this silent issue because many don’t know there are solutions that address sexual under-stimulation. Reports suggest that as many as 40% of sexually active women suffer from sexual dysfunction (1). Sexual disorders can have organic causes such as hormonal disturbances (low testosterone levels) or psychological disorders that can respond to therapeutic interventions. Other forms of sexual disturbance have no known organic source and thus no specific therapy. Lastly, sexual dysfunction can itself cause psychological distress, which can affect emotional well-being and cause relationship stress.
The O-Shot is a newly developed solution to address orgasmic and sexual function. Women who have had the procedure have seen dramatic improvements in sexual arousal so much so that they have gone online to share their experience with other women- see linked article that is a little racy but humorous and nicely describes what one can expect form the O-Shot: here.
How does the O-Shot work?
The O-Shot involves the injection of autologous platelet rich plasma (PRP) into the tissues in and around the clitoris and urethra. PRP is produced from your own blood. Blood is drawn into a specially treated vial and centrifuged. The resultant serum is a concentrated solution of platelets.
Platelets are our bodies first defense in tissue repair. The platelets function by releasing “growth factors” which initiate new blood vessel formation (angiogenesis) and new collagen and elastin formation (neo-collagenesis and neo-elastogenesis). The result is tissue regeneration and repair.
PRP has been used for years by orthopedic surgeons for treatment of tendinitis and joint ailments and by oral surgeon surgeons to assist with bone graft healing. Recently, PRP has been shown to be very effective in producing facial skin rejuvenation and in treating male and female hair loss, especially after a procedure called microneedling. The central theme in all of these examples of PRP’s effectiveness is repair and regeneration.
PRP, when injected in the upper vaginal tissues and in the structures around the vagina (clitoris, Skene’s glands and peri-urethral tissues), has stimulatory and regenerative effects. The Skene’s glands are thought to be analogous to the male prostate and are thought to be responsible for “female ejaculation.” The growth factors in the platelets deposited with PRP injections are thought to result in new blood vessel formation (angiogenesis), fibroblast stimulation (new collagen formation), glandular proliferation (Skene’s glands) and neuronal growth. The effects of these processes are thought to increase blood flow and nerve regrowth in and around the clitoris and “G-spot” increasing sensation, arousal and orgasmic response. The new collagen formation is thought to, in part, be responsible for the effects of PRP on stress incontinence by thickening the tissues around the urethra. (1)
How Is the Procedure Performed?
O-Shot treatments are essentially painless. They are performed in our office by Courtney Albritton, PA-C. Courtney has almost 8 years of experience in women’s health, joining us after her previous employment at Ob/Gyn Specialists here in Cedar Rapids, IA. Courtney will take a history and perform a targeted exam to determine whether you are a good candidate for the procedure.
The procedure itself begins with preparation of the PRP. Courtney will draw your blood into a specialty treated vial which is then spun in a centrifuge. Courtney will then place a topical local anesthetic onto the areas where the injections are performed. The local anesthetic works very well in the lining of the vaginal and peri-vaginal tissues making the actual injections nearly painless. The whole process takes about 1 hour.
What to Expect After Your O-Shot
Because no sedation is required, you can drive yourself to the appointment and drive yourself home. There is no “downtime” and you can have intercourse that night. You will notice changes 2-3 weeks after the procedure. The effects of the O-Shot can last for 1-2 years; repeat treatments can be performed at that time.
As ThermiVa can also augment orgasmic function, combining O-Shot injections with ThermiVa can be complimentary.
(1) A Pilot Study of the Effect of Localized Injections of Autologous Platelet Rich
Plasma (PRP) for the Treatment of Female Sexual Dysfunction
Charles Runels*, Hugh Melnick, Ernest Debourbon and Lisbeth Roy
J Women’s Health Care Volume 3, Issue 4