THE ROAD TO BIG O

HERE COMES AN ORGASM IN­JEC­TION TO SU­PER­SIZE THAT ELU­SIVE KEY TO FE­MALE PLEA­SURE, THE G-SPOT, AND GRANT WOMEN A SPRING­TIME OF EROTIC RE­NEWAL

India Today - - INSIDE - By Da­mayanti Datta

Women’s li­bidos get an up­grade as a new orgasm in­jec­tion promises to am­plify the G-spot

Eight sec­onds. What can you do in that time? Here’s some sci­ence: it takes eight sec­onds for a morsel of food to travel from your mouth to your stom­ach. That’s how long the brain takes to store a piece of in­for­ma­tion in your long-term mem­ory. That’s the time needed for a man to fall in love at first sight. And now there’s a new ‘sci­ence’ tak­ing shape in clin­ics of cos­metic gy­nae­col­o­gists across the world, where it takes ex­actly that long to tem­po­rar­ily su­per­size the elu­sive key to fe­male plea­sure, the G-spot, with in­jecta­bles that typ­i­cally plump up droop­ing lips and sag­ging cheeks. The G-shot (med­i­cally, G-spot am­pli­fi­ca­tion) promises to bring a woman to mul­ti­ple cli­maxes dur­ing sex­ual in­ter­course in min­utes. The pro­ce­dure, given un­der lo­cal anaes­thetic, has taken off in In­dia—for about Rs 50,000 a shot, that lasts four months. And go­ing by re­ports, de­mand is swelling from a trickle to a tor­rent.

WHERE IS IT EX­ACTLY?

Where ex­actly is the G-spot? You mean, you don’t know? I haven’t checked my­self that closely. You’re not sup­posed to check, you’re sup­posed to feel. Hasn’t your hus­band…? Oh, you know him… That’s your prob­lem. You don’t de­mand any­thing. I just got my­self fixed. Re­ally? How? Shhh. Don’t tell any­one. Don’t tell what? I got my­self a jab. A jab for what? lank. The sound of metal on metal is oddly loud in the sani­tised si­lence of the clinic. You are ly­ing on your back, legs spread wide, an­kles locked in stir­rups. The sur­geon hov­ers over you, hold­ing a mean-look­ing specu­lum in one hand—sim­i­lar to a can-opener but with flar­ing duck­bill blades— and a gi­gan­tic sy­ringe in the other. As he pokes, prods and peeps at the most in­ti­mate part of your anatomy, you yo-yo be­tween fear, em­bar­rass­ment and pain, fran­ti­cally try­ing to think of the won­der­ful fu­ture in store for you: a spring­time of erotic re­newal. “Con­grat­u­la­tions.” The sur­geon fi­nally takes off his gloves, smil­ing mis­chie­vously. “You’re ready to rock and roll.”

For the last 15 years, Dr Deepa Ganesh has zipped through down­town Chen­nai—Kil­pauk, Vada­palani, MRC Na­gar, Al­war­pet—from one pri­vate hos­pi­tal to an­other, op­er­at­ing on ovar­ian cysts, re­mov­ing uter­ine polyps, re­build­ing dam­aged fal­lop­ian tubes. But in the past few years, the thir­tysome­thing gy­nae­col­o­gist with an easy smile and lively eyes has been com­ing across pa­tients she could not re­ally help: women fac­ing prob­lems in the bed­room. “Women with over­stretched vagi­nas, per­haps due to child­birth, fac­ing painful in­ter­course, dis­com­fort and lack of plea­sure due to phys­i­cal or psy­cho­log­i­cal

rea­sons,” re­calls Ganesh. Women have tra­di­tion­ally dealt with such prob­lems in si­lence, she ex­plains. “But now they are more con­scious and have the courage to not just talk about it but to do some­thing about how they look, feel and func­tion as a woman, in ev­ery way.”

Re­spond­ing to that, Ganesh started ex­plor­ing an emerg­ing field in medicine: cos­metic gy­nae­col­ogy. With celebrities, tele­vi­sion shows, so­cial me­dia, in­ter­net and mo­bile de­vices cre­at­ing an un­prece­dented level of aware­ness, the new mil­len­nium had ush­ered in new de­mands and new pro­ce­dures in the multi-bil­lion busi­ness of beauty: from ‘mommy makeovers’ to return women to their pre-preg­nancy bod­ies in US to limb-length­en­ing in In­dia, rad­i­cal fa­cial surgery in South Korea, ‘im­prove­ments’ to breasts, ab­domens and but­tocks in Brazil, nose jobs in Iran and ‘de­signer vagi­nas’ in the whole of the western world. “With shav­ing or wax­ing pu­bic hair be­com­ing as com­mon as the re­moval of un­der­arm hair in the US, dec­o­ra­tions, tat­toos, pierc­ings and sur­gi­cal mod­i­fi­ca­tion of the area has kicked off,” adds Ganesh.

She went to the US to train in vagi­nal re­ju­ve­na­tion un­der Dr David Mat­lock of Bev­erly Hills, Hol­ly­wood, a sur­geon renowned for his in­no­va­tive tech­niques on the vagina, apart from the ‘Brazil­ian Butt Lift’ he did for Kim Kar­dashian. In 2002, he de­vel­oped a pro­ce­dure for G-spot am­pli­fi­ca­tion that thick­ened and ex­panded the G-spot area—from 8.1 mm to 15–20 mm in di­am­e­ter and 0.4 mm to 5-10 mm in length, as re­ported in his 2002 patent (pend­ing)—lead­ing to height­ened sex­ual arousal and sen­si­tiv­ity. That year, he had given G-shots to 15 women and re­ported that while 50.7 per cent reached cli­max dur­ing in­ter­course ear­lier, it be­came 82.7 per cent af­ter the shot. Ganesh fin­ished her five-month train­ing in Novem­ber last year and started of­fer­ing G-shots—the first such in In­dia.

YES. NO. YES?

The front wall of the vagina has a dis­tinct ero­to­genic zone No. The vagi­nal walls are quite in­sen­si­tive to sen­sa­tion Yes. Press­ing a par­tic­u­lar spot can lead to orgasm. Let’s call it the G-spot No. Noth­ing in the vagi­nal wall would lead di­rectly to that ex­pe­ri­ence Yes. Ul­tra­sounds show that some women have a G-spot, some don’t No. G-spot is a fig­ment of women’s imag­i­na­tion Yes. The G-spot is a sac-like struc­ture on the front wall of the vagina G-spot is just a sen­si­tive area that’s part of the larger plea­sure com­plex

Does the G-spot ex­ist? “That’s like ask­ing if god ex­ists,” says Dr Narayana Reddy, an ex­pert in sex­ual medicine and a con­sul­tant with Apollo Hos­pi­tal, Chen­nai, a Fel­low of the Amer­i­can Col­lege of Sex­ol­o­gists. Pur­port­edly, the G-spot is a spongy, pea-sized area one to two inches in­side the wall of the vagina, and can be dis­cerned by touch. Be­lieved to be an eroge­nous zone, which, when stim­u­lated, may lead to strong sex­ual arousal, pow­er­ful or­gasms and even ejac­u­la­tion for some women. For oth­ers, it re­mains a life-long quest. “De­spite all the mir­a­cles of mod­ern sci­ence, the seem­ingly straight­for­ward ques­tion—‘does the G-spot ex­ist?’—re­mains unan­swered.” Ques­tions about it—where it is, what it does, if it ex­ists at all—have sup­port­ers and crit­ics lock­ing horns.

It was psy­cho­an­a­lyst Sig­mund Freud who first sug­gested, in 1905, that there were two types of or­gasms, call­ing a vagi­nal orgasm the “one true orgasm”. The the­ory

WOMEN ARE MUCH MORE AD­VEN­TUR­OUS NOW. THEY WANT TO EN­JOY POW­ER­FUL SEN­SA­TIONS” DR D.J.S. TULLA Plas­tic and cos­metic sur­geon, Delhi

got a bi­o­log­i­cal ba­sis when, in 1950, Ger­man gy­nae­col­o­gist and in­ven­tor of the in­trauter­ine de­vice (IUD), Dr Ernst Gräfen­berg, re­ported a “dis­tinct ero­to­genic zone” on the frontal wall of the vagina. He was ig­nored and even mocked. In fact, in 1953, zo­ol­o­gist Al­fred Kin­sey, author of the famed Kin­sey Re­ports, pub­lished his Sex­ual Be­hav­ior

in the Hu­man Fe­male, call­ing the vagi­nal walls “in­sen­si­tive to sen­sa­tion”. For­got­ten for decades, it at­tained star­dom in 1982, when it got a new name and new le­git­i­macy in a book, The G Spot and Other Dis­cov­er­ies about Hu­man

Sex­u­al­ity, that be­came an in­stant in­ter­na­tional best­seller. Re­searchers John Perry, Bev­erly Whip­ple and Alice Kahn had noted swelling in re­sponse to stim­u­la­tion in over 400 women. Yet re­searchers doubted there was any­thing to stim­u­late in the first place, call­ing it a “mod­ern gy­nae­co­logic myth”.

In 2008, the G-spot be­came a talk­ing point again when re­searchers at the Univer­sity of L’Aquila in Italy lo­cated it us­ing ul­tra­sound. But, they said, there was a catch: some women seemed to have a G-spot, while oth­ers didn’t. The pen­du­lum con­tin­ued to swing, un­til in 2014 new re­search con­cluded that the G-spot was just a part of a larger fe­male plea­sure re­gion. In the fi­nal analysis, de­spite ev­i­dence that spe­cific anatom­i­cal struc­tures cor­re­spond to the area de­fined as the G-spot, its ex­act anatom­i­cal iden­tity in all women, uni­ver­sally, re­mains in­con­clu­sive.

BE­LIEVE IT OR NOT

Af­ter my G-shot I get sex­u­ally aroused per­form­ing yoga I had con­stant mul­ti­ple or­gasms which went on for hours That first time, the whole thing was so in­tense I was ac­tu­ally a bit scared I was rid­ing in the car with my part­ner and we went on this cob­ble­stone road and I be­came sex­u­ally aroused… guess what hap­pened next? I have this smile on my face and peo­ple think that I am en­joy­ing my work­out but ac­tu­ally I am sex­u­ally aroused

The tes­ti­mo­ni­als above are from some of the over 2,000 women who have re­ceived a G-shot from Mat­lock, with a 65 per cent return rate. When she was in the US, Ganesh says she came across women as young as 16, ac­com­pa­nied by their moth­ers, seek­ing con­sul­ta­tion. In In­dia, it has not been easy to break into the world of con­ju­gal­ity. De­spite plenty of in­quiries, Ganesh has ac­tu­ally given the shot to about 15 women so far, the youngest be­ing 30 and old­est 46. “Typ­i­cally, they come on their own and many don’t even tell their hus­bands.”

Last year, Dr Bharti Ma­goo, a mem­ber of the Amer­i­can Academy of Cos­metic Surgery, also launched a sim­i­lar tech­nique at her clinic in Sion, Mum­bai—Golden Touch —where she prac­tises along with a gy­nae­col­o­gist. “Most of my pa­tients are in their 40s and 50s,” she says. Most of her pa­tients are also long-time clients and trust her enough to talk about their sex­ual trau­mas. “For most, their sex­ual lives had plum­meted, ei­ther due to re­duced li­bido, less sat­is­fac­tion or a sense of short­com­ing, lead­ing some­times to in­se­cu­ri­ties in re­la­tion­ships,” she says. “For some, the G-spot was dead, due to abor­tions or sur­gi­cal pro­ce­dures.” For oth­ers, the vagi­nal mus­cles had be­come loose, thanks to child­birth. With a more prom­i­nent G-spot, it has be­come pos­si­ble for most to en­joy uter­ine or­gasms, she says. They are not the only ones. Cos­metic gy­nae­col­o­gists and plas­tic sur­geons across the coun­try

to be fo­cus­ing on the new de­mand. At the root of it is the new In­dian woman, they say. “Women are as­sert­ing them­selves,” says Dr D.J.S. Tulla, plas­tic and cos­metic sur­geon, aes­thetic and re­con­struc­tive surgery at Primus Hos­pi­tal, Delhi. “They are much more ad­ven­tur­ous now. They want to en­joy pow­er­ful sen­sa­tions. With greater sex­ual awak­en­ing, the de­mand for this pro­ce­dure is ex­pected to rise.” Doc­tors are also busy ex­per­i­ment­ing with the new soft-tis­sue aug­men­ta­tion ‘fillers’ that have emerged in the past few years: the hu­man-de­rived col­la­gen pro­tein; hyaluronic acid (or Resty­lane), a type of polysac­cha­ride; the brand new Radiesse, made from cal­cium hy­drox­ide; and Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP) taken from the pa­tient’s blood and then re-in­jected. Dr Rahul Goyal, cos­metic and plas­tic sur­geon in Mo­hali, Chandigarh, says per­ma­nent re­sults can be achieved by us­ing der­mal fat grafts. “More ex­pen­sive but a one-off pro­ce­dure that re­sults in per­ma­nent im­prove­ment, although you’ll need to stay off sex for six weeks,” he says.

THAT PIL­LOW TALK

I have a headache... How can you have a headache ev­ery day? I’m sorry… What do you mean? It’s just that… I’m not try­ing to make you feel bad… What?

Yes, we know: men are from Mars and women from Venus, es­pe­cially when it comes to the mo­ment of max­i­mum plea­sure. Sim­ply be­cause the male and fe­male sex­ual sys­tems are dif­fer­ent. But, sta­tis­ti­cally, that trans­lates into fright­en­ing num­bers. Ac­cord­ing to non-profit Planned Par­ent­hood Fed­er­a­tion of Amer­ica, which pro­vides re­pro­duc­tive health ser­vices globally, some 10 per cent women are in­ca­pable of orgasm—due to phys­i­cal con­di­tions, med­i­ca­tion or ill­ness; one in three women typ­i­cally don’t orgasm dur­ing sex, due to psy­cho­log­i­cal blocks; and 80 per cent of women have dif­fi­culty with or­gasms for a range of rea­sons.

That doesn’t sur­prise Dr Firuza Parikh, Di­rec­tor of As­sisted Re­pro­duc­tion and Ge­net­ics at Jaslok Hos­pi­tal, Mum­bai. The story she reg­u­larly hears from young ur­ban cou­ples is one where both have de­mand­ing jobs, come back home ex­hausted, or­der in from a fast-food out­let and fall asleep right af­ter dinner, ex­hausted. “I see a lot of cou­ples in sex­less mar­riages, orgasm-less re­la­tion­ships or with less-than-in­spir­ing sex lives,” she says. “Sex works best when we make time for it, turn off our com­put­ers and switch off our phones, be­cause it is more com­pli­cated for women to orgasm than men.”

Fe­male sex­ual dys­func­tion (FSD) is yet an­other story. The World Health Or­ga­ni­za­tion de­fines FSD as “the var­i­ous ways in which a woman is un­able to par­tic­i­pate in a sex­ual re­la­tion­ship as she would wish”. Doc­tors at the De­part­ment of Ob­stet­rics and Gy­nae­col­ogy at the All In­dia In­sti­tute of Med­i­cal Sciences, Delhi, have called for a sys­tem­atic ap­proach to as­sess­ment of FSD, to en­sure ap­pro­pri­ate treat­ment. “FSD is some­thing we en­counter rou­tinely,” says Dr J.B. Sharma, pro­fes­sor, AIIMS, “rang­ing from per­sis­tent and re­cur­ring loss of de­sire or arousal, dif­fi­culty or in­abil­ity to achieve an orgasm, or painful in­ter­course.” Stud­ies say that 43-76 per cent of In­dian women re­port some kind of sex­ual prob­lem.

Cul­ture plays a ma­jor role. “Con­ven­tional stereo­types about good girls-bad girls in­hibit a lot of women,” says Kolkata-based psy­chol­o­gist Dr Anirud­dha Deb. For many, hav­ing or­gasms is some­thing shame­ful, even with some­seem

WOMEN NOW HAVE THE COURAGE TO DO SOME­THING ABOUT HOW THEY LOOK, FEEL AND FUNC­TION” DR DEEPA GANESH Cos­metic gy­nae­col­o­gist, Delhi

one they trust. For oth­ers, it’s just too dif­fi­cult to say what they need. “There’s the idea a lot of women grow up with, that you have to pan­der to the male ego,” he says. “Many avoid sex, or fake an orgasm, rather than ar­tic­u­lat­ing their needs.” There’s a caveat here: “How does one de­fine won­der­ful time?” Emo­tional and phys­i­cal close­ness, warmth and car­ing can mean a ‘won­der­ful time’ even if each sex­ual en­counter does not end in an orgasm, he ex­plains. “The ques­tion is of un­re­solved is­sues in one’s sex life,” he says. “And coun­selling could help.”

ONE THOU­SAND QUES­TIONS

Will the G-shot re­ally en­hance ev­ery woman’s orgasm? How long can one keep tak­ing the shots? How safe are they? Can they lead to un­fore­seen side-ef­fects? Will there be long-term ef­fects of in­ject­ing a for­eign ma­te­rial into the vagina?

There’s some­thing oddly chore­ographed about plea­sure at the end of a nee­dle. “I would call it all a gim­mick,” says Dr Shahin Nooreyez­dan, chief of the Apollo Cos­metic Clinic at In­draprastha Apollo Hos­pi­tal, Delhi. He is un­con­vinced that the G-spot is a dis­tinct anatom­i­cal en­tity. “Un­der a mi­cro­scope, vagi­nal tis­sues have never shown a huge net­work of nerve end­ings.” And even if it ex­ists, he doesn’t think the G-shot can help women who suf­fer from sex­ual dys­func­tion.

What is wor­ry­ing is the lack of data about the ef­fi­cacy of the pro­ce­dure or its po­ten­tial com­pli­ca­tions: from scar­ring of the vagi­nal tis­sue, painful in­ter­course, in­fec­tion, al­tered sen­sa­tion, de­creased lu­bri­ca­tion and the re­duc­tion of li­bido. In fact, the Amer­i­can Col­lege of Ob­ste­tri­cians and Gy­nae­col­o­gists has been ques­tion­ing pro­ce­dures such as ‘vagi­nal re­ju­ve­na­tion’ and ‘G-spot am­pli­fi­ca­tion’ since 2007 for not be­ing ‘med­i­cally in­di­cated’ and for lack­ing doc­u­men­ta­tion on ‘com­pli­ca­tion rates’ and ‘safety and ef­fec­tive­ness’ (Ob­stet­rics & Gyne­col­ogy, Septem­ber 2007). The treat­ment is still based on pa­tient feed­back, with the US Food and Drug Ad­min­is­tra­tion (FDA) ap­proval still pend­ing. In­ject­ing a for­eign sub­stance in the vagina is an­other cause for con­cern. ‘Off-la­bel use’ of ap­proved drugs (or us­ing those for pur­poses beyond what they were ap­proved for) is not un­com­mon in medicine, nor il­le­gal. And some­times they are nec­es­sary, es­pe­cially when it comes to can­cers—but the risk re­mains. “Many of the in­jecta­bles for G-shots are off-la­bel,” points out Nooreyez­dan. The FDA’s ap­proval process for the safety of drugs and med­i­cal de­vices is con­sid­ered the gold stan­dard world­wide, and it has not ap­proved any fillers for G-spot am­pli­fi­ca­tion, or for in­jec­tion into the vagi­nal wall. Col­la­gen, hyaluronic acid, Radiesse and PRP have all been ap­proved for chronic wound heal­ing, not as der­mal fillers. But then, the FDA does not reg­u­late med­i­cal prac­tice, nor has it re­ceived any com­plaints against G-shots as yet.

As for the doc­tors who in­tro­duced the treat­ment to In­dia, most con­sider it to be a ‘low-risk pro­ce­dure’ that doesn’t re­quire peer-re­viewed stud­ies or clin­i­cal tri­als. Most of Ma­goo’s pa­tients worry about scar­ring, about even­tual loss of sen­sa­tion and about the risk of can­cer. “Most of these wor­ries aren’t true,” she says. Af­ter so many years in the busi­ness, she trusts the ground re­ports: pa­tient tes­ti­mo­ni­als. “I am yet to come across any­one who is not happy,” she says. Tulla thinks it’s the dawn of a ‘new be­gin­ning’: of women’s right to plea­sure. For now, things may ap­pear a bit odd, but soon, he pre­dicts, G-shots will be as com­mon as boob jobs.

WE WANT MORE

“May I feel, said he; (I’ll squeal, said she; just once, said he) It’s fun, said she…”

If sex is a func­tion of its time, what does it say about the sex­ual life of the na­tion’s women? What ex­plains their foray into an un­charted ter­ri­tory of plea­sure? At its core, is it re­ally about a bun­dle of poorly-de­fined tis­sues, that may or may not—at the end of a scary ex­pe­ri­ence and a big price tag—bring on eu­pho­ria? Or is it all about power for women? Jug­gling high-pow­ered ca­reers with pic­tureper­fect homes, big money with big re­spon­si­bil­i­ties, are they try­ing to be ‘more like men’ in that one sphere where bi­ol­ogy is largely destiny? To be able to turn their arousal ‘switch’ on and off just like men, be as gen­i­tally-fix­ated, and en­hance G-spots with jabs just as men bran­dish their erec­tion-en­hancer, Vi­a­gra?

But the road to Big O may turn out to be bumpy. De­spite the de­bates, doc­tors agree on one thing: who is an ideal pa­tient for a G-shot? The one who is al­ready hav­ing the most fun be­tween the sheets. Ouch.

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