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Infectious Diseases in Obstetrics and Gynecology
Volume 3, Issue 5, Pages 193-197
Clinical Study

Medical Management of Vulvar Vestibulitis: Results of a Sequential Treatment Plan

Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology, and Reproductive Sciences, Temple University School of Medicine, 3401 N. Broad Street, Philadelphia 19140, PA, USA

Received 29 August 1995; Accepted 19 December 1995

Copyright © 1995 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Objective: The objectives of this study were to assess the efficacy of medical management for vulvar vestibulitis and to examine several historical variables and determine their predictive values as to which treatments will be most successful.

Methods: Seventy-four patients diagnosed with vulvar vestibulitis were evaluated. Each patient was treated using a sequence of consecutive medical therapies for vulvar vestibulitis. These therapies were topical aqueous 4% lidocaine with intercourse, topical corticosteroid therapy, oral amitriptyline, topical low-dose 5-fluorouracil (5-FU) cream, intralesional alpha-interferon, and a low-oxalate diet in combination with oral calcium citrate. The patients were followed over 3–30 months and their responses to therapy were assessed. In addition, a statistical analysis was performed to determine the positive predictive values of certain historical variables and specific treatment successes.

Results: Forty-nine patients reported positive responses to one of the initiated therapies. More specifically, 18.1% of the patients who used lidocaine, 33.8% who used topical corticosteroids, 57.1% who used amitriptyline, 16.7% who used 5-FU, none who received interferon, and 50% who tried a low-oxalate diet had positive responses to therapy. No historical variables were predictive of which therapies would have the most successful outcome.

Conclusions: Medical management is effective in alleviating the symptoms of vulvar vestibulitis. Various aspects of a patient's history are not helpful in selecting the therapy that will be most effective.