WARNING: The Embarrassing Bodies website contains images of an explicit medical nature and nudity in a medical context.

Embarrassing Bodies Down Under, 1:00am Tuesday 28th April 2015 on Channel 4. Catch up for free on 4oD »

Conditions

Vulvodynia

Vaginas

This unpleasant condition causes chronic pain and discomfort in the vulval area, with the most common symptoms including stinging, burning, irritation and rawness. The condition can vary in severity; for some they experience only mild discomfort, but for others it can severely inhibit their normal lives and prevent enjoyment of sexual activities. There are treatments available, including anti-depressant and anti-convulsant drugs, but there are also creams and gels that can be applied to help with the pain. With up to 15% of women suffering with this condition, you can be sure that you’re not alone, and your GP will be able to help.

Comments and Questions

The EB doctors have been looking at your comments and have answered some of the common questions below. Remember that it is always best to check with a health professional if you have any concerns about your health.

You can share your experiences and thoughts with other Embarrassing Bodies site-users below. Comments & Questions are reviewed by moderators, but if you see anything on the site that worries you, please report it and one of our moderators will look at it as soon as possible.
Please note: Unfortunately Channel 4 cannot respond to individual inquiries. If you have any concerns, you can check out NHS Choices, but ultimately it is always best to check with a health professional.

Hi again! Forgot to mention in my last comment that vulvadynia is a nerve problem, it isn't caused by infection or yeast, it is compression of the Pudendal Nerve. Please look up Pudendal Neuralgia or Pudendal Nerve Entrapment, it will give you the answers you need. My problem seems to be my pelvic floor muscle and the small intestine all pushing into one area where the Pudendal nerve runs through. This nerve splits into lots of directions, it sets off all nerve endings in your genitals and or anus/rectum (you can also get lower back pain with this condition). There may be a very slight compression in your pelvic area (front or back) that could be causing this. I took some print outs from the Pudendal Info web site into my GP. He wasn't aware of this condition and all of the consultants at my local hospital didn't know enough about it to help me. I had to find all the information myself and even find the right pain clinic to go to and ask to be referred there. Please let me know if this information has helped any of you in anyway.





This will be published. Surnames, nicknames or usernames are not allowed


Your email address will be kept confidential and will NOT be published – it is only being collected here in case Channel 4 need to contact you in relation to your comment.


Please don’t swear or be rude in your comments, as they will not be added to the site. Please do not use your full name when posting comments. If in doubt, refer to the community guidelines

By posting on this website you are agreeing to abide by our community guidelines

Hi Im 19 years old and have been with my boyfriend for 5 years i have had the worst 2 nearly 3 years of my life when it comes to sex i cant bare the pain and its came to the stage i have no sex life what so ever its terrible i have been to my gp and she reffered me to the hospital and the gave me a cream witch to me looked like a paste witch also treated eczema and it didnt help at all, I have had thursh before i dont know if that is the main cause but readin everyones comments i dont know what to think i gave up with my gp as she said i should think about getting counsiling she said it was all in my head (How Pathetic) I have tryed ky jelly and other lubs but nothing seems to help! i feel as if its a cut down below but my boyfriend has looked and cant see anything the burning it awful i have had to cool it down with cold water at some points during sex and i cant get to sleep because the pain it gives me I hope if i see a different doctor soon as possible and explain about Vulvodynia she might agree with me and maybe put my mind at ease





This will be published. Surnames, nicknames or usernames are not allowed


Your email address will be kept confidential and will NOT be published – it is only being collected here in case Channel 4 need to contact you in relation to your comment.


Please don’t swear or be rude in your comments, as they will not be added to the site. Please do not use your full name when posting comments. If in doubt, refer to the community guidelines

By posting on this website you are agreeing to abide by our community guidelines

Hi, I'm 34 yrs old, I've 3 children. I got this blue spots on my labia, I only found this out recently. I've asked my ex, and he said it been there for years before I had my children (my eldest is 12), What are they? I darent to see a gp over this.





This will be published. Surnames, nicknames or usernames are not allowed


Your email address will be kept confidential and will NOT be published – it is only being collected here in case Channel 4 need to contact you in relation to your comment.


Please don’t swear or be rude in your comments, as they will not be added to the site. Please do not use your full name when posting comments. If in doubt, refer to the community guidelines

By posting on this website you are agreeing to abide by our community guidelines

Hi! I have been suffering with a condition called Pudendal Neuralgia after having a colonoscopy in September 2007. My symptoms started in my vulva and was at first diagnosed with vulvadynia. Amitriptyline did relief the soreness and pain slightly but still couldn't sit down without pain, wear underwear or tight clothing. Whilst looking up vulvadynia on the internet, I found another site with regards to Pudendal nerve entrapment/Neuralgia. This site described my symptoms and lifestyle to a T. This problem can affect men and women. My GP and all consultants I was seeing had heard of the pudendal nerve but were unaware of this condition. This condition can be brought on by child birth, excessive exercise (cycling or running) as well as long term constipation. I have just finished having pudendal nerve blocks at the UCLH pain management clinic in London. The doctors there know a lot about this condition and completely understand you. The CT scan blocks did give me a few days of relief. There are other treatments they can offer, I haven't quite got there yet. I have just seen my bowel specialist today and he thinks he has seen why I am having bowel problems (Constipation). I have a weak area of my pelvic floor and my small intestine is prolapsing and pushing on my rectum area. He thinks this is also causing compression of the pudendal nerve. At last, after two years of bouncing around different GP's and consultants, I have finally got a diagnosis which will hopefully cure both problems. My advice to all you nerve suffers is to research your problems and keep going back to your GP until you get referred to the right person to help you. If you haven't been referred to a pain clinic please ask your GP, they can refer you for nerve block injections. These injections may not last long but it is a step in the right direction to get better pain relief or a diagnosis. I hope this information helps some of you.





This will be published. Surnames, nicknames or usernames are not allowed


Your email address will be kept confidential and will NOT be published – it is only being collected here in case Channel 4 need to contact you in relation to your comment.


Please don’t swear or be rude in your comments, as they will not be added to the site. Please do not use your full name when posting comments. If in doubt, refer to the community guidelines

By posting on this website you are agreeing to abide by our community guidelines

Katie it doesnt sound like vulvodynia, but tell your mum or go to the doctors. it could just be growing pains or something like that.





This will be published. Surnames, nicknames or usernames are not allowed


Your email address will be kept confidential and will NOT be published – it is only being collected here in case Channel 4 need to contact you in relation to your comment.


Please don’t swear or be rude in your comments, as they will not be added to the site. Please do not use your full name when posting comments. If in doubt, refer to the community guidelines

By posting on this website you are agreeing to abide by our community guidelines

Hello ladies, I started suffering about five years ago. I had to stop sex for about six months and then had it only intermittantly for a year due to it being very sore. I got diagnosed at a GUM clinic because I had no idea what the problem was to start with and had never heard of it. It started after I had thrush and used some creams - I don't know if the thrush triggered it or a reaction to the creams. Now when I get a thrush flare up I just smear a bit of yoghurt on there and it clears it up real quick - the lactobacillus in the yoghurt outcompete the thrush and bring your microflora levels back to normal. With regards to the vulval pain (I was told mine was called vestibulitis due to the area affected) I am a lot better than I used to be through a combination of using the amintryptyline (sorry spelling is prob not right) tablets (but these make you drowsy) and pelvic floor exercises (keep at it, it takes a couple of months). Now I can have sex again, except straight after my period when I am sore again. I use the Natracare sanitary pads and loose clothing - this helps too. Good luck ladies - I hope you find some relief. If you haven't seen a doctor yet then go go go - don't suffer in silence - they are there to help and have seen it all. :-)





This will be published. Surnames, nicknames or usernames are not allowed


Your email address will be kept confidential and will NOT be published – it is only being collected here in case Channel 4 need to contact you in relation to your comment.


Please don’t swear or be rude in your comments, as they will not be added to the site. Please do not use your full name when posting comments. If in doubt, refer to the community guidelines

By posting on this website you are agreeing to abide by our community guidelines

reading all the comments makes me feel better as it does tend to feel like you are alone with this. for about 2 years (i am 25 years old) or so i have now had 'painful sex', and was diagnosed finally about 5 months ago with vulvodynia. the lidocaine gel did nothing, and i was on 100mg amytriptiline daily...that may have helped the pain a tiny bit, but i have put on masses of weight and it played havoc with my bowels. i am now nearly off that drug and really dont want to try another tablet as they all have side effects which i hate. my relationship is at at breaking point...vulvodynia being at the centre of it. i have been to about 3 psychology sessions which i have not got on with at all. this is wearing me down and i just dont know how it all started...i used to have a normal and enjoyable sex life :(





This will be published. Surnames, nicknames or usernames are not allowed


Your email address will be kept confidential and will NOT be published – it is only being collected here in case Channel 4 need to contact you in relation to your comment.


Please don’t swear or be rude in your comments, as they will not be added to the site. Please do not use your full name when posting comments. If in doubt, refer to the community guidelines

By posting on this website you are agreeing to abide by our community guidelines

i'm 14 and I don't know whether it's the same thing but i get a shooting pain down the outer lip and it really hurts. I haven't told anyone but It hurts really bad. help!!!!





This will be published. Surnames, nicknames or usernames are not allowed


Your email address will be kept confidential and will NOT be published – it is only being collected here in case Channel 4 need to contact you in relation to your comment.


Please don’t swear or be rude in your comments, as they will not be added to the site. Please do not use your full name when posting comments. If in doubt, refer to the community guidelines

By posting on this website you are agreeing to abide by our community guidelines

Hi I completely sympathise with nathalie, to have this awful condition at such a young age. I agree more should be done about it but it such a silent condition and very little is known about it.I agree it makes you feel suidcidal, i only hope that my daughter does not suffer with it. I am waiting for acupuncture on the nhs now,the only thing that really eases is EMLA cream have you tried that it isnt a cure but does relieve the itching for a while.I wish there was a support group available so that sufferers could help each other.





This will be published. Surnames, nicknames or usernames are not allowed


Your email address will be kept confidential and will NOT be published – it is only being collected here in case Channel 4 need to contact you in relation to your comment.


Please don’t swear or be rude in your comments, as they will not be added to the site. Please do not use your full name when posting comments. If in doubt, refer to the community guidelines

By posting on this website you are agreeing to abide by our community guidelines

I have been suffering from labia sores for nearly 3 years. I have had the talk about soaps and cotton underwear. I have had a biopsy on of them but still no relief. I wash with dermol 500 but my trigger is heat.I get very sweaty in that area and on top of that periods make you moist aswell.Nobody understands that when these sores appear I find walking and even sitting uncomfortable.After a while the sores bleed and disappear but not for long.Could anyone advise me.I am an Endometriosis sufferer and have had kidney probs which i can cope with but the sores are the last straw!





This will be published. Surnames, nicknames or usernames are not allowed


Your email address will be kept confidential and will NOT be published – it is only being collected here in case Channel 4 need to contact you in relation to your comment.


Please don’t swear or be rude in your comments, as they will not be added to the site. Please do not use your full name when posting comments. If in doubt, refer to the community guidelines

By posting on this website you are agreeing to abide by our community guidelines





This will be published. Surnames, nicknames or usernames are not allowed


Your email address will be kept confidential and will NOT be published – it is only being collected here in case Channel 4 need to contact you in relation to your comment.



Please don’t swear or be rude in your comments, as they will not be added to the site. Please do not use your full name when posting comments. If in doubt, refer to the community guidelines

By posting on this website you are agreeing to abide by our community guidelines

It looks like no one else has asked this question, so please fill in the rest of your details below.





This will be published. Surnames, nicknames or usernames are not allowed


Your email address will be kept confidential and will NOT be published – it is only being collected here in case Channel 4 need to contact you in relation to your answer.



Please don't swear or be rude in your questions, as they will not be added to the site. Please do not use your full name when posting questions. If in doubt, refer to the community guidelines

Questions submitted to the site will be answered by other site users, not by medical professionals, so if you have a medical concern, please book an appointment with your GP.

By posting on this website you are agreeing to abide by our community guidelines


Important Notice

The information provided on this website (including any NHS Choices medical information) is for use as information or for educational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical care by a qualified doctor or other qualified healthcare professional. We do not warrant that any information included within this site will meet your health or medical requirements. This Embarrassing Bodies site does not provide any medical or diagnostic services so you should always check with a health professional if you have any concerns about your health.


If you want to embed our videos in your site, read our embedding T&Cs here


More Information

  1. Am I Normal Vagina

    In Videos - Dr Dawn Harper discusses what is and isn't normal when it comes to…

  2. Am I Normal Periods

    In Videos - Dr Dawn Harper discusses all matters relating to periods and what i…

  3. Am I Normal Penis

    In Videos - Dr Dawn Harper discusses what is and isn't normal when it comes to…

  4. Doctor Responses: Polycystic Ovaries

    In Videos - Dr Dawn discusses the causes and treatments available for PCOS, as…

  5. Am I Normal?

    In Episodes - Episode 2 of Embarrassing Teenage Bodies looks at conditions includ…

  6. Doctor Responses: Diabetes

    In Videos - Dr Dawn Harper answers your common questions about coping with diab…

  7. Dr Dawn Harper

    In Videos - Find out more about Dr Dawn Harper

  8. Doctor Responses: Pelvic Floor Problems

    In Videos - Dr Dawn answers common questions from women regardng the pelvic floor.

  9. Doctor Responses: Foot Problems

    In Videos - Dr Dawn aims to keep your feet healthy by answering the most popula…

  10. Doctor Responses: OCD

    In Videos - Dr Pixie answers your most common questions on the tricky subject o…

  11. Doctor Responses: Eczema and Skin Conditions

    In Videos - Dr Dawn advises on the most common questions sent in to the Embarra…

  12. Doctor Responses: Night Terrors

    In Videos - Dr Dawn answers your most common questions about night terrors and…

  13. Quick Health Advice: Unwanted Facial Hair

    In Videos - Dr Harper explains the causes of unwanted facial hair and some of t…

  14. Doctor Responses: Female Sexual Dysfunction

    In Videos - Dr Dawn frankly and honestly answers your questions about female se…

  15. Bodies Behaving Badly

    In Episodes - Episode 1 of Embarrassing Teenage Bodies examines conditions includ…


Help Beat Cancer

Download our free mobile game to help Reverse The Odds in the fight against cancer.

Available on App Store, Google Play and Amazon App Store >