Vulvar Disease, Care, & Treatment

What is Vulvar Disease?

The vulva is the external part of a woman's genitals some mistakenly refer to this region as the vagina. Some issues you can experience with the vulvar area include
• Bacterial or fungal infections
• Skin problems due to allergy
• Vulvar cancer
• Folliculitis
• Dermatitis
• Many issues associated with Lichen
• Vulvodynia, or vulvar pain

Symptoms may include redness, itching, pain, or cracks in the skin. Treatments often require a highly experienced and specialized physician as their training usually derives from the internal aspects of gynecology.


Vulvodynia, literally translates into vulvar pain. The location, constancy and severity of the pain vary among sufferers of this treatable disease. There are two types of associated symptoms some women experience pain in only one area of the vulva, while others experience pain in multiple areas. The most commonly reported symptom of Vulvodynia is burning. Some times Vulvodynia is reported as “acidic burning” while others claim the sensation is “knife-like” – either way, living with Vulvodynia is an unpleasant experience.

Most women do not know how surprisingly common Vulvodynia is. It dramatically affects sex life and is often a topic not openly discussed. Dr. Fellenbaum has dedicated his life to its study and teamed up with the National Vulvodynia Association to develop its treatment. To date Dr. Fellenbaum has treated over 500 women who suffer from this disease and has granted them a significantly greater quality of life.

Vulvar Dermatosis

Most women believe that all vulvovaginal symptoms are due to yeast infections, bacterial vaginosis, or sexually transmitted diseases because they are unfamiliar that other conditions exist.

Desquamative inflammatory vaginitis is not an infection or STD but it is produced by inflammation of the vagina of an unknown cause. Symptoms can include, yellow/green discharge, irritation and redness at the vaginal opening and painful intercourse.

Group B streptococcus is a bacterium that lives normally in the vagina of many women. It is not an STD. It is only medically important in the last stages of pregnancy as it can cause significant illness in newborns. Symptoms include vulvar and vaginal irritation.

Lichen planus is a skin disease that sometimes affects the vulva, vagina, and inside of the mouth. It is caused from an overactive immune system. It cannot be cured, but medications improve the skin and provide comfort. If left untreated the vaginal walls can scar together and close the vagina so that intercourse is no longer possible. Symptoms include white skin and superficial sores.

Lichen sclerosus is most apt to appear on the Vulva. It’s cause is unclear but it is believed to be caused by an overactive immune system. Symptoms can include itching, bruising, tearing, pain and white skin.

Lichen simplex chronicus (LSC),(atopic dermatitis, eczema), also called Atopic dermatitis, eczema, neurodermatitis, and dermatitis. Symptoms can include itchy skin rash from sensitive skin and mild irritation from soap, water, perspiration, stress, or rubbing of clothes.

Vestibulodynia can be diagnosed when women complain of burning, irritation, or pain who have vulvar and vaginal skin that looks normal, cultures that rule out infection, and vaginal secretions that look normal under the microscope. It is most likely caused by a combination of nerve abnormality, pelvic floor muscle weakness and irritability.

Vulvar Disease Treatment

• There are numerous reasons for seeking a vulvar disease specialist. At Mid-Michigan Vulvar Care, treating the pain is only one part of managing your symptoms. Our collaborative approach at ensures that women receive full circle care, from state of the art treatment options to education.

• Our clinic is one of the rare clinics that specialize in treating these conditions.

• Many women experience different forms of vulvar pain, including vulvodynia, which prevent them from enjoying intercourse or day-to-day life due to a frequent stinging.