Vulvodynia (Vulvar pain)

By Dr. Elise Dubuc

Some women experience chronic pain in the vulva. These pains can be caused by touching the vestibule (the vaginal entrance) during sexual intercourse or by wearing tight clothing. They can also be constant and spontaneous over the entire vulva area. A gynecological examination and certain investigations may be necessary to properly analyze the situation and make a diagnosis. These pains can lead to a great deal of distress and create sexual dysfunction. There are treatments for these conditions.

If the cause of the pain is atrophy of the vaginal mucosa secondary to menopause, a local estrogen treatment can be prescribed, or CO2 laser and/or radiofrequency technologies (Emfemme) can be performed. If the pain is caused by touching the vaginal introitus, pelvic-perineal physiotherapy or a combination of muscle remodeling (Emsella) and radiofrequency (Emfemme) technologies can relieve and desensitize the painful area.

In the case of deep vaginal pain, it is important to rule out any infection in the uterus that may be caused by an STI (sexually transmitted infection) or endometriosis.

For unprovoked and constant vulvodynia, the optimal treatment is medication after eliminating neurological and musculoskeletal causes.

In all cases of vulvar pain, it is important to consult a health professional for evaluation and treatment.