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Am J Obstet Gynecol. 1991 Oct;165(4 Pt 2):1228-33.

Vulvar vestibulitis syndrome: an overview.

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  • 1Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, George Washington University Medical School, Washington, DC.


Vulvar vestibulitis syndrome is a constellation of symptoms and findings involving and limited to the vulvar vestibule that consists of: (1) severe pain on vestibular touch to attempted vaginal entry, (2) tenderness to pressure localized within the vulvar vestibule, and (3) physical findings confined to vulvar erythema of various degrees. Histopathologic findings are consistent with a chronic, nonspecific inflammatory response that is occasionally associated with metaplasia of the minor vestibular glands. The cause is likely multifactorial, and to date the syndrome has been seen in association with subclinical human papillomavirus, chronic recurrent candidiasis, chronic recurrent bacterial vaginosis, chronic alteration of vaginal pH, and the use of chemical and destructive therapeutic agents. Therapy is directed at elimination of these symptoms. When symptoms are unrelieved, a surgical approach consisting of vestibulectomy with vaginal advancement has a high rate of success.

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