Background Injection treatments have been proposed as novel treatment options for Vulvovaginal Atrophy of Menopause (VVA) also known as Genitourinary Syndrome of Menopause (GSM). However, to date data about these treatments are poor.Objective To assess all available injection treatments for VVA.Methods A systematic review was performed by searching five electronic databases for peer-reviewed studies that assessed injection treatments for VVA.Results Eight studies (7 observational and 1 randomized) with 236 women were included.Assessed injection materials were: autologous platelet-rich plasma (PRP) + hyaluronic acid (HA), not cross-linked HA plus calcium hydroxyapatite (NCLHA + CaHA), micro-fragmented adipose tissue (MFAT), hyaluronan hybrid cooperative complexes (HCC), crosslinked HA, microfat and nanofat grafting + PRP, and PRP alone.Improvement in GSM symptoms after treatment was assessed through Visual Analogic Scale (VAS) for GSM symptoms or patient satisfaction, several validated questionnaires (FSFI, VHI, FSD, SF12, ICIQ UI SF, PGI-I, FSDS-R, VSQ), symptoms severity, changes in vaginal mucosa thickness, flora, pH, and expression on vaginal mucosal biopsies of Procollagen I and III and ki67 immunofluorescence or COL1A1 and COL3A1 mRNA.Injection treatments showing significant improvement in GSM-related symptoms were: (i) HCC in terms of VAS for GSM symptoms and FSFI score; (ii) Crosslinked HA in terms of VAS for GSM symptoms, FSFI and VHI score, COL1A1 and COL3A1 mRNA expression on vaginal mucosal biopsies; (iii) NCLHA + CaHA in terms of FSFI score; (iv) PRP + HA in terms of VHI, FSD and SF12 score; (v) microfat and nanofat grafting + PRP in terms of VHI score and FSDS-R score; (vi) PRP alone in terms of VHI and VSQ scores.Conclusions All assessed injection treatments except for MFAT seem to lead to significant improvement in VVA symptoms on validated questionnaires. Further studies are necessary in the field.
Moccia, Felice;Pentangelo, Paola;Ceccaroni, Alessandra;Raffone, Antonio;Losco, Luigi
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