Not all skin is created equal; vulvar skin is markedly more sensitive than skin on other areas of the body. Careful examination of the vulva and external genitalia is an important component of the well-woman gynecologic examination. Even though the vulva is the most visible component of the female genitalia, it is sometimes overlooked and, in fact, has been termed the forgotten pelvic organ. Nevertheless, dermatologic complaints are among the most common reasons women see a primary care practitioner.
Lichen sclerosus is a chronic inflammatory skin disorder that most commonly affects women before puberty or after menopause. Although rare, it can also be seen in men. When found in males, the disease is known as balanitis xerotica obliterans. Lichen sclerosus is characterized by skin changes of the external genitalia. The most common distribution is a figure of 8 involving the vulva and perianal area. The head of the penis and other parts of the body may also be affected. In fact, this skin condition can affect any skin surface.
Symptoms Vulval problems: a self-help guide. Unfortunately, many chronic vulvo-vaginal symptoms are still not properly understood. This has led to a number of conflicting opinions about their causes, and therefore their possible remedies.