Australian Family Physician
Australian Family Physician


Volume 40, Issue 7, July 2011

Common vulval dermatoses

Catherine Drummond
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The vulva is skin, and it is helpful to approach vulval conditions from a dermatological perspective. The vulva is affected by the same dermatoses as the rest of the skin, but modified in appearance by special influences.
This article will outline an approach to the diagnosis and management of vulval dermatoses.
Vulval disorders present as infections, rashes and lesions, and pain. This article considers inflammatory vulval disorders that present as erythematous rashes, pallor or erosions and ulcers. Most vulval dermatoses are recurrent or chronic and may require maintenance therapy. Chronic painful and itchy vulval conditions can lead to secondary pelvic floor spasm and a sensory neuropathy. Many vulval disorders are multifactorial and can benefit from a multidisciplinary approach to management.

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