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The unique, effective approach of the Maercks Institute

Dr. Maercks understands the sensitivity and impact that female sexual dysfunction can have. He is committed to personalized, discreet care for women who suffer from vaginismus. Dr. Maercks offers two approaches to treating vaginismus, both surgical and non-surgical, depending on which procedure will benefit your unique situation and goals.

At the Maercks Institute, we offer a completely unique and different approach when it comes to care and treatment for vaginismus. Dr. Maercks will perform a specialized, in-depth evaluation for you to determine whether your condition is muscular and structural. Most offices are unable to do such evaluations due to inexperience with this issue, but Dr. Maercks’ experience allows him to give you this service and special care. From there, Dr. Maercks will decide which treatment will be the most effective due to your specific situation.

Vaginismus, causes, and factors

Women with primary vaginismus have symptoms starting at a young age. They often notice a problem when trying to use a tampon or receive a pelvic exam. Secondary vaginismus can develop at any point in a woman’s life, even if she has had years of normal sexual function beforehand.

Vaginismus can be caused by both physical and psychological factors. Some of the most common causes of vaginismus include:

  • Medical conditions such as UTIs, STDs, pelvic inflammatory disease, or others
  • Fear of or anxiety about sexual intercourse
  • Pelvic surgery or other trauma to the pelvic area 
  • Side effects from certain medications, causing pelvic pain
  • Normal or difficult vaginal deliveries during childbirth
  • C-sections
  • Miscarriages
  • Vaginal dryness
  • Past trauma, such as rape, sexual or physical abuse, or assault
  • Menopause
  • Hormonal fluctuations
  • Anxiety and depression
  • Relationship problems

In addition to physical or psychological steps taken to resolve vaginismus, further treatment often is still needed to relieve the symptoms to the point where sex and intimacy are enjoyable. 

For some women, none of the usual causes are at play, and there is no clear reason for their vaginismus symptoms. However, treatment is still usually an option.

Botox, the non-surgical approach to resolving vaginismus

Botoxshort for botulinum toxin, is more than an injectable to smooth the lines and wrinkles in the face. Botox is made from a substance that relaxes the muscles. It can help treat chronic pain conditions because it prevents muscles from contracting--that’s why it resolves facial wrinkles. Using Botox to treat vaginismus has over a 90% success rate as a permanent solution to vaginismus. 

On your first visit, we will perform a test to see if Botox is right for you. This allows us to go forward with Botox with the certainty of results, instead of the usual approach of giving the treatment in the hopes that it will work, while you wait for a week to find out if it does.

At the Maercks institute, the Botox approach to treating vaginismus is carefully individualized to target the muscle group for each patient, as there may be different contracted areas from person to person. Dr. Maercks begins by identifying the exact muscle group of the pelvic floor causing the issue. 

Once this muscle group is isolated, Dr. Maercks will inject Botox into these pelvic floor muscles that are specifically responsible for the condition of vaginismus. The Botox relaxes and eases the muscles. Within 10 days of the treatment, a vaginal dilator can be used. Progressive dilation of the vagina is done, slowly helping the muscles dilate until they can allow expansion on their own. Once you feel comfortable, you can attempt sexual penetration.

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The surgical approach to resolving vaginismus

Vaginismus surgical treatment is quick and effective. A procedure is done to address the hymen, called a “hymenectomy” operation. A hymenectomy is performed, and the procedure takes less than one hour. Incisions are made on a few different areas, allowing the vaginal canal a wider point of entry once the procedure and recovery are complete. 

This procedure is usually done with local anesthesia. However, sedation anesthesia is available for patients who prefer it.

Most patients resume their normal activities a few days after the surgery. Sexual intercourse is possible 3-4 weeks following the procedure.

Why choose The Maercks Institute to treat my vaginismus?

At the Maercks Institute, our patients come first. Awareness and attention to the sensitive nature and physical or physiological pain associated with vaginismus is of paramount importance to Dr. Maercks. He offers a unique and different approach--one that works permanently--to resolve it. He is here for you every step of the way to get you through this challenging issue, from your initial consultation to your follow-up appointments. His experience with helping women overcome vaginismus especially qualifies him to evaluate your case, giving you the most effective treatment possible.

Dr. Rian Maercks is a board-certified cosmetic, plastic, and reconstructive surgery specialist whose training in fine arts and philosophy created the framework through which he explores the world of medicine and plastic surgery. Patients come to him with an issue, and he determines the best way to go about solving it. He truly cares for each patient and wants to help you resolve your vaginismus for good. If you’re interested in learning more about these procedures, including which one may be the best for your unique case and ultimate goals, we invite you to contact our office.

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