Get access

Assessment and Management Options for Women with Vulvodynia


  • Kim J. Cox CNM, PhD,

  • Cynthia E. Neville PT, DPT, WCS, BCB-PMB

Kim J. Cox, CNM, PhD, University of New Mexico College of Nursing, MSC 09 53501 University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM 87131-0001. E-mail:


Vulvodynia is a chronic pain disorder that affects sexual function in adult women. The etiology of vulvodynia is poorly understood, making the condition difficult to diagnose and treat. Women with vulvodynia often suffer significant psychological distress and have difficulty finding a compassionate and supportive health care provider. This article reviews the etiology, diagnosis, educational strategies, and treatment options for vulvodynia with the aim of increasing primary care providers’ knowledge and assessment skills. Physical therapy and other nonsurgical treatment modalities are explored in depth.