Vulvodynia Definition, Reason, Symptoms, Treatment & Prevention

Vulvodynia Definition, Reason, Symptoms, Treatment & Prevention


Vulvodynia is a condition where there is pain or discomfort that occurs around the outside of the vagina, or the area called the vulva. This condition is generally diagnosed when it has lasted for at least three months and no underlying cause is found.

The pain, burning sensation, or irritation that occurs as a result of vulvodynia can cause high levels of discomfort. This makes sufferers feel very painful when sitting for a long time or having sex.

This condition can last several months to several years. In people with vulvodynia, treatment can be done to overcome the pain they experience.

Vulvodynia Symptom

The main symptom that occurs with vulvodynia is pain in the vaginal area, which can be felt as:

  • Burning sensation
  • Pain
  • Pain during intercourse (dyspareunia)
  • Itching
  • A throbbing pain

Pain that occurs can be continuous or intermittent. Sometimes, pain is only felt when there is a touch on a sensitive area. The pain can also be felt in the entire vulvar area or localized to certain areas.

Vulvodynia Reason

The cause of vulvodynia is not known with certainty, but several factors that are thought to contribute are:

  • Injury or irritation of the nerves around the vulvar area
  • History of previous vaginal infections
  • sensitive skin
  • Hormonal changes
  • Spasm or weakness in the pelvic floor muscles, which support the uterus, bladder and intestines


Before making a diagnosis of vulvodynia, the doctor will conduct a detailed medical interview to ask about medical history, surgery, and sexual history, as well as perform a physical examination. Some of the checks that can be done include:

  • Pelvic examination

The doctor can perform a visual examination of the external genitalia and vagina to see if there are signs of infection or other causes of the symptoms you are experiencing. Apart from that, the doctor can also take a sample of cells from the vagina to check for certain infections that are experienced.

  • Examination of the cotton swab ( cotton swab test )

The doctor can use cotton swabs to examine specific areas of the vulva that are painful.

Vulvodynia Treatment

Treating of vulvodynia aims to overcome the complaints that are experienced. In most cases, a combination of several types of treatment can be effective in dealing with the complaints you are experiencing.

Some of the treatment options that can be done include:

  • Certain classes of medication can be prescribed by a doctor to treat the pain or itching that is felt.
  • Use of local painkillers. Pain medication in the form of an ointment can be prescribed by a doctor to temporarily deal with complaints.
  • Nerve block injection. Patients who do not respond to other treatments may benefit from nerve block injections.
  • Pelvic floor muscle therapy. Women with vulvodynia may experience tension in the pelvic floor muscles, which support the uterus, bladder and intestines.
  • In certain types of localized vulvodynia, surgery to remove the clit and involved tissue can be helpful for pain relief for some women.


Because the cause of vulvodynia is not known with certainty, there is no way that has been proven to be fully effective in preventing this condition.

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