Vulvodynia is pain of the vulva that lasts more than three months.
The vulva is made up of the:
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The cause is not known. It may be due to:
Vulvodynia is more common in women who are 20-40 years of age.
Other factors that may raise your risk are:
The main symptom is pain that lasts more than three months.
You may have:
You will be asked about your symptoms and health history. A physical exam will be done. You may also have a pelvic exam. The area may need to be closely checked. This can be done using a colposcope to magnify the area.
Your bodily fluids and tissues may need to be tested. This can be done with:
Talk with your doctor about the best treatment plan for you. This may mean:
You may be given:
Therapy can help strengthen and relax the pelvic muscles. This will ease muscle spasms. A doctor who specializes in pelvic floor issues may be needed.
The following steps can help ease pain:
Suggested treatments for vulvodynia include:
Vulvodynia can't be prevented.
The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists
National Vulvodynia Association
Canadian Women's Health Network
Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Canada
ACOG Practice Bulletin No. 93: Diagnosis and management of vulvar skin disorders. Obstet Gynecol. 2008;111:5):1243-1253. Reaffirmed 2013.
Vulvodynia. American Academy of Family Physicians Family Doctor website. Available at: http://familydoctor.org/familydoctor/en/diseases-conditions/vulvodynia.html. Updated April 1, 2014. Accessed July 26, 2018.
Vulvodynia. EBSCO DynaMed Plus website. Available at:http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T128775/Vulvodynia. Updated September 18, 2018. Accessed July 26, 2018.
Vulvodynia. National Institute of Child Health and Human Development website. Available at: http://www.nichd.nih.gov/health/topics/vulvodynia/Pages/default.aspx. Updated January 31, 2017. Accessed July 26, 2018.
What is vulvodynia? National Vulvodynia Association website. Available at: http://www.nva.org/what-is-vulvodynia. Accessed July 26, 2018.
4/7/2014 EBSCO DynaMed Plus Systematic Literature Surveillance.http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T128775/Vulvodynia: Reed BD, Legocki LJ, et al. Factors associated with vulvodynia incidence. Obstet Gynecol. 2014;123(2.1):225-231.
Last reviewed May 2018 by EBSCO Medical Review Board Kathleen A. Barry, MD Last Updated: 7/26/2018