Vaginal Reconstruction After Radical Hysterectomy and Radiation?

I had a radical hysterectomy, radiation and chemo and now my vagina is very short and narrow. I cannot use estrogen for tissue elasticity, and I don't want a deforming abdominal flap surgery. I've seen some studies about vaginal reconstruction and complete vaginal replacement using stem cells to build the new vaginas, but I can't find a doctor who knows more about this. Is there anyone out there that can point me in the right direction? It saddens me that I can't have intercourse. Please help!

Doctor Answers 3

Vaginal Reconstruction after Radical Hysterecomy and Radiation

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I thank you for your question regarding this extremely important and sensitive area.  Classically, the most efficient and least deforming procedure for vaginal reconstruction utilizes a flap of tissue from the upper inner thigh adjacent to the labia majaora and groin crease.  The resulting scar lies "hidden" within the groin crease.  This flap actually retains some sensory nerve supply which is advantageous as well. 

I personally am not aware of anyone reliably and repeatedly being able to reconstruct and/or replace the entire vagina with stem cells.

Glad to help... @drryanstanton

Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 128 reviews

Treatment options for severe vaginal stenosis

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If you were treated for cervical cancer, estrogen is not contraindicated because it is not a hormonally sensitive cancer. If this was your misperception, then estrogen therapy and vaginal dilator therapy over several months might be a good first step. Stem cells are not going to be a stand alone solution for any vaginal enlargement strategy, but can't hurt to add to the mix. You don't necessarily need to use flaps. Another option is an upper vaginectomy combined with a McIndoe or Vecchietti procedure if the blood supply is adequate.

Radical Hysterectomy, Radiation, and Chemo

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    Given your history, the university setting would provide your greatest opportunity for improvement.   Reconstructing this area can be done by a plastic surgeon well versed in a multitude of techniques.  Even at Harvard, no stem cell therapies were being trialed for this. 

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.