Conejo Women's Medical Center -  - OB-GYN

Karie McMurray, MD, FACOG

OB-GYN located in Conejo Valley, Westlake Village, Thousand Oaks, CA

Dyspareunia Specialist

When women go through menopause, symptoms such as hot flashes and night sweats are common. However, other symptoms include vaginal dryness, itching, and painful intercourse can also be present. These symptoms are much worse and have a deep impact on women’s daily lives and intimate relationships. Dr. Karie McMurray offers relief from symptoms with minimally invasive MonaLisa Touch® laser treatments. Patients can visit Dr. Karie McMurray at Conejo Women’s Medical Center, located in Westlake Village, Thousand Oaks, California and the surrounding Conejo Valley area.

Dyspareunia Q & A

What is dyspareunia?

Dyspareunia is a medical term that describes painful intercourse or other types of sexual pain. This is pain that can occur with penetration, during intercourse, or following intercourse; it can be present anywhere in the genital area such as the clitoris, labia, or vagina. Women often describe the pain as sharp, stinging, burning, or cramping.

According to the North American Menopause Society (NAMS), dyspareunia afflicts about 45% of the 65 million menopausal and postmenopausal American women.

Dr. McMurray has several treatment options that can alleviate dyspareunia and help women get back to pain-free sex. For example, vaginal dryness can be treated with estrogen through bio-identical hormone replacement. For patients who prefer a nonhormonal option, vaginal moisturizers can be as effective as hormone therapy when it comes to addressing vaginal dryness.

What causes painful intercourse?

You may experience pain during intercourse for a variety of reasons. Your pain may be due to insufficient lubrication or tightness in the vaginal opening. Painful intercourse might also be caused by tears or scarring deeper in your vagina. These adhesions are often due to penetrative sex with insufficient lubrication or when you have vaginal atrophy, a menopausal condition that causes the tissue of your vagina to become thin and dry.

You might also experience pain during sex if you have an infection or local irritation from something as commonplace as a tampon or a minor latex allergy.

What is the MonaLisa® Touch?

If vaginal dryness, itching, painful sexual intercourse, or incontinence are interrupting your quality of life, the MonaLisa Touch can help alleviate your symptoms without causing pain or inconvenient side effects. It’s a specially designed C02 fractional laser that Dr. McMurray uses to relieve some of the most common side effects of estrogen shortage. The MonaLisa Touch technology is similar to aesthetic lasers, but the focus of this treatment is to encourage new collagen production in the vaginal walls. As the cells become revitalized, uncomfortable symptoms will improve as natural gynecologic functions are restored.

What happens during MonaLisa touch treatments?

MonaLisa Touch laser vaginal revitalization is performed as an outpatient procedure in the comfort of the Conejo Women’s Medical Center offices, and it takes less than five minutes. Dr. McMurray recommends undergoing three treatments, spaced about six weeks apart, to achieve the best results. However, many patients have noticed remarkable improvement after the first session.

MonaLisa Touch treatments aren’t painful, but to reduce any discomfort, an anesthetic cream can be applied prior to treatment. Patients should avoid engaging in sexual activity for a few days following the procedure, but can otherwise resume their normal routines without experiencing any downtime.

Contact Conejo Women’s Medical Center today to learn more about how the MonaLisa Touch can help improve your gynecologic health.


Words from our patients

  • Healthgrades

    "I've been going to Dr. McMurray for about 16 years now. I am so appreciative of the time she takes with me and her complete and total attentiveness."

    Sue L.
  • Healthgrades

    "My concerns were addressed and treated to my extreme satisfaction. I highly recommend Dr. McMurray to women of all ages and concerns."

    Pamela D.
  • Yelp

    "If you want to be treated like a family member or dear friend, go see Dr. McMurray. She is very sweet and attentive."

    Kim M.
  • Yelp

    "I adore Dr. McMurray, she always makes me feel comfortable."

    Kiki H.
  • Yelp

    "I've been going to Karie McMurray for about 20 years. A wonderful, very comfortable office with great front office staff also!"

    Laura G.