Fractional CO2 laser therapy for genitourinary syndrome of menopause for breast cancer survivors

Allison M. Quick, Filadelfiya Zvinovski, Catherine Hudson, Andrew Hundley, Cynthia Evans, Anupama Suresh, Julie A. Stephens, Elizabeth Arthur, Bhuvaneswari Ramaswamy, Raquel E. Reinbolt, Anne M. Noonan, Jeffrey Bryan VanDeusen, Robert Wesolowski, Daniel G. Stover, Nicole Olivia Williams, Sagar D. Sardesai, Karen L. Smith, Stephanie S. Faubion, Charles L. Loprinzi, Maryam B. Lustberg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Purpose: Fractional CO2 laser therapy is an emerging treatment for genitourinary syndrome of menopause (GSM). The objective of this study was to determine the feasibility and preliminary efficacy of fractional CO2 laser therapy in breast cancer survivors. Methods: This was a single arm feasibility study of breast cancer survivors with dyspareunia and/or vaginal dryness. Participants received three treatments of fractional CO2 laser therapy at 30-day intervals and returned for a 1-month follow-up. Feasibility was defined as treatment completion without serious adverse events (SAE) in 80% of patients. We collected data on the Vaginal Assessment Scale (VAS), the Female Sexual Function Index (FSFI), the Urinary Distress Index (UDI), and SAE. Results: A total of 64 patients participated in the study. The majority of women had Estrogen receptor/Progesterone receptor (ER/PR) positive/Her2neu negative (n = 37; 63%), stage I (n = 32, 54%) or II (n = 19, 32%) breast cancer. Most were receiving endocrine therapy (n = 54, 92%), most commonly aromatase inhibitors (AI; n = 40, 68%). Fifty-nine (88.1%) of those enrolled completed all treatments according to protocol with no reported SAE. No patient withdrew due to SAE. The scores of the VAS (mean Δ − 0.99; 95% CI [− 1.19, − 0.79], p < 0.001)), FSFI (mean Δ 9.67; 95% CI [7.27, 12.1], p < 0.001), and UDI (mean Δ − 8.85; 95% CI [− 12.75, − 4.75], p < 0.001)) improved from baseline to follow-up. Conclusion: Fractional CO2 laser treatment for breast cancer survivors is feasible and appears to reduce GSM symptoms across treatment and follow-up.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3669-3677
Number of pages9
JournalSupportive Care in Cancer
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 1 2020


  • Breast cancer
  • Fractional CO2 laser therapy
  • Genitourinary syndrome of menopause
  • Vaginal atrophy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology


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