Aa
A
A
A
Close
Women's Health Community
65.9k Members
Avatar universal

Please Read. Sensitive Clitoris and Swollen Labia

My symptoms started with what looked and felt like a yeast infection under only the hood of the clitoris, once that cleared up I was still experiencing extreme sensitivity on the clitoris and/or the inner labia. My inner labia are swollen to some degree every day; sometimes sensitivity comes with this, sometimes not. When I say sensitivity I mean that every little hair, underwear or anything that touches my inner labia or clitoris is an irritant!! I can't wear underwear and I can only wear loose fitting clothing or the symptoms get worse. I've been dealing with this for 8 months now. I’ve been on a yeast-free and sugar-free diet for 4 months (this diet seems to help- even though I keep testing negative for yeast. Besides loosing 10 pounds- this diet has been AWFUL!!)

I used to feel a rawness under the clitoris hood and between the inner labia a lot, but I haven't felt this as much sense I’ve been going to the acupuncturist. It's very rare that I feel any  itchiness. My acupuncturist and the specialist seem to think these symptoms are a result from having bladder infections in the past (I have a sensitive bladder), DOES ANYONE THAT HAS A SENSITIVE BLADDER, or have had many bladder infections in the past, and HAVE SIMILAR symptoms as me?

I've seen 2 doctors and 1 specialist, none have really told me anything and ALL tests always come back negative (I was tested for herpes as well.)  I've taken Monistat, flagyl, cortizone (steroid) pills and cream and nothing has worked. The specialist has put me on a neurotransmitter medicine because she thinks the nerve endings in my vulva are misfiring, which sounds far fetched to me but at this point I'll try anything!

Is anyone else having similar issues??

104 Responses
Avatar universal
you should ask your doctor about a clitoral hood infection. i had to see 3 doctors before a OBGYN told me it was that and they ended up having to cut me open and drain all the liquid out. I am having this problem again and the doctor now just gave me anti - bacterial medicines and then told me to go to the OBGYN again. My clitoral hood is sooooo swollen and my clitoris is hard underneath and feels like it is badly bruised to the touch. Hopefully this helps. :) My doctor said it was from like spa's or things like that. I went surfing and then it happend so I am thinking that it has something to do with that.
Avatar universal
THANK  YOU for responding. I'm calling  my doctor today because I finished up the medicine she gave me and I'm still very swollen, the sensitivity went away but obviously having a swollen clitoris and inner labia isn't comfortable! I will ask her about that. However, for it's not the hood that really swollen, it's my inner labia. But my clitorus does feel very hard underneath the hood like you mentioned. As if it was eroused and stayed that way. My doesn't feel sore to touch but it doesn't feel normal either.

Questions: do you have the smemga (white stuff) built up underneath your clitoral hood?
Also, do you get little white spots under the hood? I thought it was apart of my clitoris but found out I can remove them, it's like a build up of some sort? It's like my glands aren't working properly or something and it's causing build up under my hood?!?! However, if I remove these little white spots, my clitoris swells and becomes sensitive for days before I feel better.

Hope to hear from you soon,

PC26
Avatar universal
I just re-read what I wrote above- sorry for all the misspellings! I was typing a little too fast.
Avatar universal
PC26...Did you recover yet? Im just wondering if it is gone away...?
Avatar universal
No, though I tell myself everyday out loud I'm getting better very soon (positive reinforcement I suppose.) My specialist has ordered a Pelvic MRI for Dec.3. Hopefully that will show something- maybe a blockage of some sorts!! She also wants me to look up "persistant sexual stimulation" (engorgment of the clitoris- ALL the time) and see if the symptoms match mine- she said it sounds similar but she doesn't belive the inner labia would be swollen all the time- which mine are. Espeically the last 4 days. It seems the more the clitoris swells, the labia swell (which is technically what happens when a women is arroused- but not to this extent.)

I will make sure to post whatever results I hear back. Fingers crossed.
Avatar universal
UPDATE: Nothing showed in the pelvic MRI, which in one way is good, but still frustrating that Doctors keep coming up empty handed. I researched "persistant sexual stimulation" and I definitely don't have that either. I'm still experiencing swelling in the inner labia. The sensitivity has definitely been reduced but some days are better then others still, as long as I don't wear underwear, wear loose fitting clothes and stick to the yeast free/sugar free diet (I definitley have learned to not deprive myseld fully, a little slip up here and there doesn't seem to do any harm and mentally it's helpful.) Weird thing I've noticed: having sex reduces the swelling- but only if I have sex every once in awhile, say once every 3 weeks seems to be helpful in my case. If I have sex more then that my clitoris and labia swell and become irritated. However, there seems to be some "release" that is needed by having sex every so often. I'm so sick of thinking about this and giving whatever "this" is my energy, so really the healthiest thing I've done is to just adjust my life to reduce sensitivity but never give this illiness any more thought then needed. I'm done stressing over it, it's going to leave me when it decides to leave me. I am confident it will subside fully one day, over the last 9 months it has slowly but surely gotten better.    
Avatar universal
It sounds to me like you have a condition called Vulvodynia.  The symptoms initially are very close to a yeast infection and UTI, however Vulvodynia is not an infection.  Search it on the internet-If you have questions, let me know.  Unfortunately I am very knowledgable on the subject.  Best of luck :o)
Avatar universal
I have similiar symptoms and was diagnosed with Vulvar Distrophy.  Ask your doctor about that.
Avatar universal
i'm experiencing the same thing with my clitoris...sensitivity, white discharge, but also, pain during intercourse. I went to the docs and i was screened for stds and BV. All tests came back neg. I'm at a point where i want to go back and be screened for UTI and yeast. But i've had both before and this doesn't really seem like either, maybe a light version of the two combined??
Avatar universal
i have similar symptoms. swollen clitoral hood and its hard and very painful to touch. i dont know how it came about as im a virgin. can someone please help. im only 16.
Avatar universal
I have similar symptoms and have been seeing a specialist in Boston -Dr. Elizabeth Stewart. She actually wrote the VBook -check it out. Very useful book -the vulva/vagina encyclopaedia written in a very matter of fact fashion. At this point I am on Clobetasol (topical) and Nortriptyline (60mg)... I'm going to see Dr. S next week again and I'm hoping to get more answers but it doesn't really seem like there's much hope unfortunately.... The clobetasol seems to cause more pain for me and the meds are making it hard to get through the work day... Anyone else out there in the same boat? Burning pain, can't sit, can't run, can't have sex? Sucks. On top of all of this my husband and I were hoping to start TTC this year... Don't know how that's going to happen when we can hardly have sex... AND the nortriptyline shouldn't be taken by pregnant women...
Avatar universal
Have you found out anything yet.  I have also been going through this for the past 9 months.  My clitoris is constantly swelled and peeling around it and sometimes I will get tears next to it which are very painful.  My doctor has tested me for everything and is at a loss.  Obviously sex is out of the question but my husband is being great about it.  I have been researching on my symptoms and came up with VIN which is a type of vulvar cancer.  I have an appointment Tuesday to hopefully explore this further.  
Avatar universal
Hi lisafc2000-

Try looking at the website below and the explanation of vulvodynia below. I've brought this up with my specialst and she doesn't seem to think this is my problem because they're supposedly haven't beeen any reports of clitoral swelling and sensitivity. However, the majority of my swelling is now in my inner labia. I'm going to print some
the stuff on the website and bring it to my specialst nenext time. DON'T BE AFRAID TO POINT OUT STUFF OR BE PERSISTANT WITH YOUR DOCTORS. They tend to write this stuff off either becasue they think we're exaggerating or because they simply don't know what to tell us.

http://www.vulvodynia.com/faq.htm#**2.%20WHAT%20ARE%20VULVODYNIA%20AND%20VULVAR%20VESTIBULITIS?**
**2. WHAT ARE VULVODYNIA AND VULVAR VESTIBULITIS?**

Vulvodynia is a general term which means, simply and literally,
"pain in the vulva." It is not the name of a disease, but a symptom, just
like "headache." Vulvar vestibulitis is a syndrome in which there is pain
at specific points in the vulvar vestibule (the portion surrounding the
entrance to the vagina). Imagine a clock superimposed on the area, with
noon pointing towards the clitoris. Women who experience vulvar
vestibulitis tend to experience pain from the 3 o'clock position to the 9
o'clock position, as well as just inside the vaginal opening. This pain
can be sharply focalized, and there may be small sores, bumps, or what
feel like small grains of sand beneath the skin's surface in these areas.

The term vulvodynia is usually used to describe burning or
stabbing pain that is felt more diffusely throughout the vulva. Many women
have both vulvodynia and vulvar vestibulitis. In both cases, the skin
usually feels extremely dry, and tears easily, leaving tiny and painful
"fissures." Both cases may also involve "referred pain", in which the pain
feels as though it travels from the vulva to the lower body.

Although it isn't mentioned in the literature, there seems to be
another category of women who are somewhere in between having vulvar
vestibulitis and vulvodynia -- they don't have generalized vulvar pain,
but have pain (and bumps or sores) not only around the vestibule but also
around the opening to the urethra, which causes burning after urination.
Others may also experience rectal pain or itching.

On this list, both vulvodynia and vulvar vestibulitis are
frequently abbreviated "vv"; "vvs"; or "vvd."
Avatar universal
Ok, I just created a hotmail account for us all to email because people seem to fall out of touch on this website. Seeing as how only one of the three doctors I've been to has heard of my, our, symptoms (and had no recommendation) my OBGYN specialist, Dr. Andrea Rapkin at the UCLA Medical Center, wants me to stay in touch with others who have similar situations as me. (To see my symptoms read the very top of this forum.)

Please email: ***@****

Please answer these questions and I will forward the results to my doctor. If we get a group of us together and communicating over email my specialist will have better information for research.

What are your “exact” symptoms (swelling in clitoris, labia, sensitivity, etc) ?
When did this start for you?
How long have you been experiencing pain/irritation?
Have you had bladder infections (UTI's), Cysts, or yeast infections in the past?

PLEASE, PLEASE EMAIL ME THIS SO WE CAN TRY AND FIGURE THIS OUT. I know this has been going on for some of you for only months, some years and it will be a year for me in February; and I know most of us have been to more then one doctor about it. SOMETHING is going on with us that doctors seem to be very confused about, the clitoris especially is not something the medical profession has a lot of information on, because, I'm told, it's not common for the clitoris to be affected by ailments. However, this “health issue” may not be the most common, but it’s common enough for multiple health websites to have posts/forums about it (so think about all the girls that aren’t posting.)

Some of us may end up having different ailments but emailing or staying in touch will at least let us figure that out.

Best Wishes,

PC26
Avatar universal
Apparently this site doesn't like us to put websites or emails on here, let me try again....

needhelp2008 (at) hotmail . com
Avatar universal
Hello,When I was young and use to masturbate my clitoris would work juss find I would reach an orgasm.I was about 11 or 12 or so.but I remember had a infection,I think it was a yeast infection.And had to take pills for it.ever since when i touch my clitoris it hurts.I dont know if takin the pills had anything to do with them but now Im almost 20 and ever since i was 12 i am not able to get any pleasure from my clitoris it still hurts until this day.I know that sounds weird but its the truth.I know it worked before,so why still after years later, why doesn't it work still?whats wrong with me,is it all in my head?Do I have to soak in warm water?Surgery?Leave it alone like I have for all these yrs in hopes of it returning to normal?Please help me?I feel so inadequate.help!

ive been searching for a while wondering what is wrong with me.to the point where i said "f*** it" thats how my body was meant to be.until i came up ad started reading this forum.and i thought i was the only one who had these problems.the clitoris has felt liek its been swollen for...7 yrs to be honest,and i truly gave up.or i have given up.i looked up smegma,and i do get it sometimes but not badly,but i dont think that has anything to do with my sensitive,no pleasure clitoris,for 7 wholllllleeee years.i was wondering could i join your group and we try and figure this out together.i would i appreciate it.i thought i was going crazy.but there are others.i hope i can join.please and thankyou.

Avatar universal
Hey there- it's not really a group-just a forum but WELCOME. I'm so sorry you've been going through this type of thing for 7 years! Have you seen and OBGYN about it?? I made a questionaire above and sent some of the responses to my specialist who's doing research on this topic (though I haven't heard from her in 2 weeks.) Feel free to filling out the above questions, you can post them on this forum, email me or send me the answers in a message on this website (we have inbox's on this website.)

I will let you know evereything I can, it's not much, still trying to figure out what in the world this could be too, but I'm hear if you need to vent at the least. IT'S NOT IN YOUR HEAD, I actually had one doctor tell me that, but thankfully the OBGYN specialist I'm seeing now see's there is a physical problem and has witness the swelling and a small amount of white build up.

-PC26
Avatar universal
I have had some of the same problems just as everyone has listed above.  I have been diagnosed with about 10 different things!!!  MRSA staph, yeast infections, cystic problems - you name it, they diagnosed it!!  Anyway, my 3rd trip in the hospital, I found Dr. Austin at UAB Highlands in Birmingham, Alabama!!  He has been a miracle worker.  I had surgery 1 week ago to the clitoral hood.  He removed an abcess about the size of a kidney bean, then drained a good amount as well.  After the surgery, general anest. and about 15-20 min, he put in a pediatric feeding tube to help continue the draining.  I stayed overnight and am recovering at home now.  I have been on every antibiotic known for this and now I am not on anything!!!  He said it is NOT common but it may happen again.  Just to find someone to help and ease my pain (and my mind!) has been such a blessing!!  Just wanted to post - hopefully it can help someone.  
Any question, please post.
Thanks
Avatar universal
I forgot to say that the feeding tube feel out about a few days later.  I have a few stitches, which will dissolve, but I feel so much better.  There is still a lot of tenderness and I am still uncomfortable sitting, standing, etc.  It will take a while to get back to normal life, but it is so much better than the quality of life I was living before the surgery.  Also, he mentioned prepuce.  I have done a little searching about it.  It is associated with female circumcision.  Like I said before, it is NOT a common problem nor is it a common surgery.  Just wanted to let you know.  Maybe it can help!
Avatar universal
Thankyou for the support,lol. and sorry for making you think that i thought this was a group. : ) But thankyou again.you said i can answer the OBGYN questionaire.Here are my answers to these questions.

What are your “exact” symptoms (swelling in clitoris, labia, sensitivity, etc) ?
-the clitoris seems and looks like its swollen underneath the hood of the clitoris, and is very sensitive.

When did this start for you?
-Since I was 11 or 12

How long have you been experiencing pain/irritation?
- For 7 years,im experiencing it right now.

Have you had bladder infections (UTI's), Cysts, or yeast infections in the past?
-Yes I remeber having a yeast infection at the age around 11 or 12, and i took a pill for it,and afetr that to be honest i think that was the root of the problem.After that yeast infection and after taking the pill,thats when the 7yr problem began.


Thanks for your help,Hopefully everything works out for us all. : )




Avatar universal

Thanks to EVERYONE who answered my questions! I passed them along to my doctor, it's obviously not going to be reliable info for her to study but it AT THE LEAST shows her that other girls are experiencing this type of health issue. I will post any information I find out!

Please feel free to post the answers to the below questions or message me, also if you can think of anything you want to add that might be valuable information I'd appreciate it! I re-did the questions- see below. THANKS!

Questions:
What are your “exact” symptoms (swelling in clitoris, labia, sensitivity, etc) ?
When did this start for you, meaning- after sex, after a yeast infection or just out of the blue?
How long have you been experiencing pain/irritation?
Have you had bladder infections (UTI's), Cysts, yeast infections or bacterial vaginosis (ex. Gardnerella, it's when the ph levels in your vaginia get all wacky and good bacteria starts becoming bad bateria) in the past?
Do you experience pain/irritation/sensitivity with the clitoris, inner labia or outer labis (or all) ?

BEST WISHES, try to stay positive  ; )

P
Avatar universal
Thank you so much for informing us on this unknown problem. I just started having problems with swollen clitoris after having sex on this Friday. At first it seem to be a yeast infection, but now one of the inner labia is swollen. I am scared. What is the first thing I should do besides go to the doctor?
Avatar universal
To answer the questions

What are your “exact” symptoms (swelling in clitoris, labia, sensitivity, etc) ?SWELLING IN CLITORIS AND ONE INNER LABIA
When did this start for you, meaning- after sex, after a yeast infection or just out of the blue? AFTER SEX
How long have you been experiencing pain/irritation? PAIN AND IRRITATION AFTER URINATING
Have you had bladder infections (UTI's), Cysts, yeast infections or bacterial vaginosis (ex. Gardnerella, it's when the ph levels in your vaginia get all wacky and good bacteria starts becoming bad bateria) in the past? I THINK HAVE HAD YEAST INFECTIONS,BUT I HAVE HAD BOILS IN THE LABIA BEFORE DUE TO CRHONS
Do you experience pain/irritation/sensitivity with the clitoris, inner labia or outer labis (or all) ? I DO EXPRIENCE PAIN AFTER SEX IN THE CLITORIS.
Avatar universal
I went to the doctor on 2/18 and found out i have an CHLAMYDIA. And now on anaboitic
Have an Answer?
Didn't find the answer you were looking for?
Ask a question
Popular Resources
From skin changes to weight loss to unusual bleeding, here are 15 cancer warning signs that women tend to ignore.
Here’s what you need to know about the transition into menopause – and life after the change takes place.
It’s more than just the “baby blues.“ Learn to recognize the signs of postpartum depression – and how to treat it.
Forget the fountain of youth – try flossing instead! Here are 11 surprising ways to live longer.
From STD tests to mammograms, find out which screening tests you need - and when to get them.
Find out if PRP therapy right for you.