Vulvar Vestibulitis Support Network

the chronicle of broken Vaginas, what we've done to try and fix them, and how we plan to save the World

Pregnancy and VVS May 22, 2009

Filed under: pregnancy,Pregnancy Diaries — Katie E @ 7:36 pm

For a long time growing up I knew I wanted to have a family. And then sometime in college I wasn’t so sure. Then I got VVS. Now I really wasn’t sure. Then my VVS went away. Are you frickin kidding me? I had no idea.

I read this article on

Does pregnancy worsen vulvodynia either during pregnancy or after delivery? There are no studies on this subject. In an issue of the NVA News, Dr. Marinoff states that about 1/3 of his patients improve, 1/3 get worse and 1/3 stay about the same. The growing fetus definitely places more pressure on the pudendal nerve and thus may worsen vulvodynia of the pudendal neuralgia sub-type. There is also more pressure on the bladder and urethra, which may aggravate urinary symptoms. However, there is an increase in circulating steroid hormones during pregnancy, including estrogen and cortisol. This may cause some cases of inflammatory vestibulitis to improve. (34)

Dr. Marinoff notes that some women have their first onset of vulvodynia during or after a pregnancy. In that case, he believes that the vulvodynia is most likely to recur with subsequent pregnancies. (34)

The Delivery and Post-partum Period:
In some cases improvement is permanent; in others the woman returns to her previous level of pain and function within about 6 months after the delivery. Unfortunately, there is no good way to predict who will improve with pregnancy and who will not or who will become worse.

So really, if I get pregnant, I have pretty much a 50/50 shot of my VVS coming back. I wrestled with this for a long time, and still do to an extent. I had a period where I had absolutely decided that I would not get pregnant. If we wanted kids that badly we could adopt. But my husband is not that keen on adoption, and I have always really wanted to be pregnant and experience that part of the life cycle. Even when I didn’t want to have kids, I still wanted to be pregnant.

So after much deliberation, my husband and I have decided to start trying. We’ve talked about it as much as we can, but you can’t plan for something like that. We’re aware of the risks and will cross that bridge if it appears. (This is all hinging on the fact that we can actually get pregnant and are not infertile.) I guess for a long time I thought I should be “safe” about it. Do the easy thing. But I’ve done that all my life. Save for 2 years of painful sex, my life has been mundane. Some people join the peace corps, others get addicted, I am going to try and have a baby with the possible consequence of having a broken vagina.

I’ll keep you posted, for now there’s nothing.

~Katie E


10 Responses to “Pregnancy and VVS”

  1. katie s Says:

    oh katie!
    you rock!
    your baby will be a superhero and will be so wonderful and awesome and darling and strong.
    what a brave, courageous and fun thing to do!
    yay! baby!

  2. Melissa Says:

    I wish you luck on getting pregnant and what you will go through. I have had vvs my whole life and wasen’t sure what was wrong til I found a dr. who was committed to helping me about a year and a half ago. My husband and I really wanted a baby as well and miraculously a handful of times intercourse was actually possible for us and I am now 20 weeks pregnant! I am anxious to see if the condition improves after delivery or not and weither or not I should consider surgery at the time of delivery. I understand your concerns and hope all things work out in your favor. VVS is not an easy thing to live with

    • Meadow Says:

      Hello ladies,

      I too am suffering from Vestibulitus and from the onset in 2006, it took me 2 years to feel normal again with out 24/7 pain. I could not even have sex with my husband for 2 years. Finally in 2008 we resumed having sex with minor setbacks. Now I am 20 weeks pregnant and am very scared for delivery. Will this make my problems much worse for much longer, or forever?

      I can’t get a c-section even though my doctor would do it because my insurance won’t cover it unless it is “medically necessary”.

      I am just wondering how your labor and birth worked out for you. I would love to hear your experiences, and hope to hear good news that everything is still ok.

      • julieannpdx Says:

        Hi Meadow! I hope things are going well for you….unfortunately, none of us here at VVSN have given birth….so we have no life-experience to share! Please keep us posted about yourself. Perhaps you can find a new doctor who will help write up a document stating why a c-section IS medically necessary?


    • Meadow Says:

      Hello ladies! Well i am a week from my due date and very worried about delivery. How are you all doing?

  3. Meadow Says:

    Ps: I felt pretty good during the pregnancy but my husband and I just tried to be intimate once more and it brought back my problem very bad 😦 I shouldn’t have attempted it but I was feeling so good, like a normal person again.

    Melissa, did you have your baby?

  4. Sheri Says:

    I’ve been dealing with this VVS issue for about a year now. I foudn a doctor who is familiar with it, after MONTHS of daily excrutiating pain. After a few months of treatments (w/premarin and lidocaine & sometimes Vicodin) things improved. For a while I felt like normalcy was possible. A few weeks ago I had a flare up and am back on treatments. It is very discouraging but I made it the first time (when things were worse) so I am trying to remain confident that this time will be ok as well (and sooner since it isn’t as bad); however, there are moments when I wonder what my future holds. I wanted to get married someday and have a kid, but until I am pain free I am not considering that. I mean, who wants to be with a woman that can’t have sex (even if just sometimes)? Now I see how some of you are married and I am wondering how that happened. Were you married before this problem and you just work through it, or did you meet your partners afterwards? I’m looking for any information (and yes, hope) that I can find as I really wanting to have a normal life again. My faith has helped me through the worst things life can possibly throw at you but this is truly testing it. Any information is appreciated. Thanks ladies.

    • Sheri Says:

      UPDATE: In the last few months things have improved significantly. The treatments my doctor had me on have been a great help. I’m seeing someone and we have been intimate. So far things seem great. There are many things I’ve done, and still do, which my doctor said has helped in the healing process such as:
      – switched to all cotton under garments
      – use only baby wash (for showering)
      – use nothing but Aveeno Oatmeal in my batch water (or just plain water)
      – wear loose clothing (not saggy, just loose enough to not rub me all day long)
      – use only Dreft detergent for laundry (no bleach, at least not on anything that comes into contact down there)
      – cut our a lot of acidic foods (to keep the urine less acidic)

      I’ve done a lot of reading on this condition and tried many things. So far things seem to be better. I know my damage (to my nerve endings) was mild but the pain was excrutiating and if this information helps even one person it will be worth the post. There is hope, even when it seems like there is none. Keep faith and NEVER give up ladies.

      • Sheri Says:

        I forgot to mention the biggest thing I did that my doctor said helped a lot…ABSTAIN. I abstained for over a year. It was tough but no one is worth the pain I was enduring. My doctor said it helps my skin to heal better and (with the treatments) has made a big difference in my recovery.

    • Holli Says:

      I found out after I got married that I had vvs. I was a virgin until my wedding night so I couldn’t have found out any earlier. Luckily I have the sweetest and most understanding husband who is fine not having intercourse; it helps he was a virgin as well as we don’t know what we’re missing that way 🙂 anyway, when we found out, my specialist suggested pelvic floor therapy. It’s not fun homework – the stretches are fine, but having to stick something in there every night to work the pain out was not pleasant… but after a couple months it did lessen the pain and make it bearable during intercourse. We decided because of the stress and extreme measures of the homework, I would only do it when we’re ready to start trying. So I’ve been married 7 years and have been able to please my husband and myself without intercourse – I think we were very blessed in that regard. And now God has blessed me yet again – I am pregnant without having intercourse! Our sex therapist told us it was possible, but I didn’t think it would ever happen. I hope if nothing else, this post will encourage you all that you can have a happy and intimate marriage despite the hardships that come with vvs.

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