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Treatment of vulvodynia (vulvar pain of unknown cause)

Susan Kellogg Spadt, CRNP, PhD
Roya Rezaee, MD, FACOG
Sheryl Kingsberg, PhD
Section Editor
Robert L Barbieri, MD
Deputy Editor
Kristen Eckler, MD, FACOG


Vulvodynia, or vulvar pain of an unknown cause, has a significant negative impact on a woman's health, self-esteem, relationships, quality of life, and work productivity. Women can have vulvar pain from a specific etiology, pain without an identifiable cause, or both. Treatment must therefore address a wide range of potential etiologies as well as provide an approach for women whose pain is not understood by available paradigms.

This topic will review our approach to treatment of vulvodynia. The evaluation of women with vulvar pain, approach to the woman with sexual pain, and evaluation and treatment of vulvar pain from specific etiologies are reviewed separately.

(See "Approach to the woman with sexual pain".)

(See "Clinical manifestations and diagnosis of localized vulvar pain syndrome (formerly vulvodynia, vestibulodynia, vulvar vestibulitis, or focal vulvitis)".)

(See "Clinical manifestations and diagnosis of genitourinary syndrome of menopause (vulvovaginal atrophy)".)

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Literature review current through: Nov 2017. | This topic last updated: Jan 06, 2017.
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