If you suffer from vaginal burning, itching, or soreness, you know it can have an impact on every aspect of your life. Symptoms of vulvodynia affect millions of women, most of whom will never receive an accurate diagnosis. While this condition is blamed on a wide variety of factors, the underlying causes are not well understood by most gynecologists or other doctors. An expert in vulvovaginal health can successfully treat your condition to restore healthy vaginal function.
What are the Symptoms of Vulvodynia?
Women who suffer from the symptoms of vulvodynia often struggle with many aspects of everyday life, from intimacy to sitting comfortably. Some women experience so much pain that they can hardly stand to have clothes touch the area. Common symptoms include:
- Stinging or burning
- Tissue injury
- Pain during intercourse
Many doctors, even gynecologists, rarely know what causes vulvodynia or how to treat it. A vulvovaginal expert like Dr. Stuart Fowler at Fowler GYN International has the tools and protocols to diagnose and treat this complex condition.
What Causes Vulvodynia?
Vulvodynia occurs when the sensitive tissues of the vulva and vestibule become irritated by altered vaginal secretions. The vestibule, the entrance to the vagina, is particularly sensitive to this type of injury. What causes vaginal secretions to become irritating to your vulvar area? The cause is often altered vagina microflora (AVMF). Many factors can cause disruptions to the normal balance of vaginal microorganisms. When problem bacteria or yeasts take over, their byproducts make your vaginal secretions into an irritant.
How is Vulvodynia Diagnosed?
Dr. Fowler uses the VFA (vaginal fluid analysis) test to diagnose your condition and plan your treatment. This test provides far more information than standard methods, including:
- Population of healthy lactobacilli
- Number and maturity of squamous cells that feed “good” bacteria
- Overgrowth of yeast
- Unusually high numbers of bacteria usually kept at low levels
Healthy vaginal microflora maintains a balance between populations of lactobacilli and other microorganisms. Under most conditions, the lactobacilli dominate, keeping the vaginal secretions at the correct acidity. Upsetting this balance can lead to other bacteria or years dominating the vaginal environment and altering the vaginal secretions.
How to Stop Vulvodynia
Vulvodynia does not have a quick fix. Dr. Fowler will determine the underlying factors affecting your vulvodynia and assign you to one of more than 40 custom-designed treatment protocols. Following the protocol, you can see your symptoms fade away and restore a healthy vaginal environment. Dr. Fowler can adjust your protocol as needed to address your changing AVMF until the correct balance has returned.
Take the Next Step
The experts in vaginal health at Fowler GYN International (FGI) Phoenix, AZ specialize in the treatment of vulvovaginal conditions. The team at FGI is led by Dr. R. Stuart Fowler. Dr. Fowler is an Emeritus Mayo Clinic board-certified gynecologist.
You can reach FGI at https://www.fowlergyninternational.com/, or by calling (480) 420-4001.