Vaginismus in peri and postmenopausal women journal article

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  • #8840
    mm
    Heather34
    Moderator

    Hi ladies. There is an excellent article titled: Vaginismus in peri and postmenopausal women: a pragmatic approach for general practitioners and gynecologists. Menopause Int. 2010 Jun;16(2):68-73.

    The Abstract of the Article indicates:

    “Vaginismus is generally described as an involuntary contraction of the vaginal musculature, which usually results in the failure of penetration. Despite a lack of consensus as to the exact definition, prevalence rates vary between 4.2% and 42%. It is commonly diagnosed at both gynaecological and psychosexual clinics. The majority of studies and treatment options concentrate on the premenopausal age group. It is accepted that even within this age group, the diagnosis is often incorrect as symptoms can be confused with dyspareunia and other sexual pain disorders. There is no literature discussing vaginismus in the postmenopausal patient, despite evidence that an active sex life is important to the majority of women, irrespective of age. It is known that the majority of women do not report difficulties in their sex life and it may be that the older patient is more embarrassed at disclosing any such difficulties. This review aims to highlight the possible causes of vaginismus in this older age group and to aid the clinician in asking the appropriate questions, performing the appropriate examination and suggesting possible treatment options.”

    I would encourage your comments and feedback here. Do you have any additional advice to aid a physician in asking the appropriate questions and performing the appropriate examination?

    #11230

    Elizabeth
    Participant

    I found it to be a VERY sensitive subject for me to talk comfortably with my gynaecologist about. Part of the problem for me at the time was I was trying to talk about the most intimate aspects of my husband and my sex life and I was looking at a male doctor and one much younger than me too!! I was able to tell him I had extreme pain with intercourse and he prescribed an estrogen suppository to use twice a week. This of course didn’t help as I had vaginismus but didn’t know it yet. The next couple of visits I became more desperate and determined and started giving him more details. One of them being that it had reached the point where any penetration was usually impossible due to the pain. This doctor did eventually diagnose me with vaginismus. He gave me a pamphlet from vaginismus. com and then sent me along my way as he was not able to help me further himself. I then found a good physiotherapist and then Dr. Pacik’s website.

    Questions the gynaecologist could’ve asked me to speed up my diagnosis: describe your pain; while attempting intercourse, describe your anxiety level on a scale of 1 – 10; is your partner able to achieve any penetration and if so, how much.

    What may be helpful to others to do before their doctor’s appointment would be to jot down on a piece of paper details you want the doctor to know about but feel you may forget to mention and/or are too embarrassed to discuss with him/her. Take the paper with you so you won’t forget any important points, or pass the paper to your doctor to read……whatever it takes! Hope this is helpful! 🙂

    #13373
    mm
    Heather34
    Moderator
    Quote:
    Quote from Elizabeth on March 4, 2013, 17:05
    I found it to be a VERY sensitive subject for me to talk comfortably with my gynaecologist about. What may be helpful to others to do before their doctor’s appointment would be to jot down on a piece of paper details you want the doctor to know about but feel you may forget to mention and/or are too embarrassed to discuss with him/her. Take the paper with you so you won’t forget any important points, or pass the paper to your doctor to read……whatever it takes! Hope this is helpful! 🙂

    This is EXCELLENT advice Elizabeth!!!

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