Laser procedure for female urinary stress incontinence: A review of the literature

There is increasing interest in noninvasive treatment of female stress urinary incontinence (SUI), including a vaginal laser procedure. In view of a lack of data on this technique, we conducted a non-systematic review of the literature.

We reviewed studies concerning the laser treatment of SUI from PubMed, Medline, the Cochrane Library and Web of Science. Study design, outcome measure, number of participants, procedural complications and results were analyzed.

The use of laser treatment of female SUI has been described in 7 prospective, single-center and non-comparative (no control group) studies, all of which used an erbium YAG or a CO2 laser in thermal non-ablative treatment. Primary outcome was ICIQ-UI-SF score in six studies, and pad tests in one study. Follow-up ranged from 5 to 36months. Improvement rates ranged from 62% to 78%. No major adverse events were noted. Minor side effects included sensation of warmth, increased vaginal discharge and transient urge urinary incontinence.

The efficacy of vaginal laser treatment of SUI has not been assessed in comparative studies. More rigorous and adequately powered trials are required to assess the relative benefits and adverse event profile of laser treatment of SUI, as compared with other minimally invasive procedures.

Progres en urologie : journal de l'Association francaise d'urologie et de la Societe francaise d'urologie. 2017 Oct 12 [Epub ahead of print]

C Conté, T Jauffret, S Vieillefosse, J F Hermieu, X Deffieux

Service de gynécologie-obstétrique et médecine de la reproduction, hôpital Antoine-Béclère, AP-HP, 92141 Clamart, France., Clinique urologique, hôpital Bichat, AP-HP, 75018 Paris, France., Service de gynécologie-obstétrique et médecine de la reproduction, hôpital Antoine-Béclère, AP-HP, 92141 Clamart, France. Electronic address: .

Pelvic Health Weekly Newsletter