Twenyt three years ago in 1988 when I was 39 I contracrted genital warts. I went to UCLA and they said I should have the warts burned off with chemicals. I went along with it. From then on I had a problem. I felt like I had a bladder infection all the time. I went back to UCLA several times complaining but they didn't know what I was talking about.
I had trouble having sex because of the intense burning. But as time went on it went into a remission. I got pregnant at 42 and had a son. I didn't have a problem with it during this time. But then over the years it would arise again and again and again and go away the same way. I could go months without it bothering me and months with it bothering me. It was awful.
I went to a special doctor in San Diego considered a quack by the medical profession and he diagnosed me with vestibulitis. He wanted me to take a myriad of hormones and if that didn't work I could have a vestibulectomy. I chose to do neither, Thank Goodness.
Last December 2011 I went into a very bad spell one more time and in desperation one more time I surfed the internet. I found Dr Rapkin at UCLA who was doing research in female pelvic pain. I knew she probably coudn't help me but I figured I would try one more time.
Dr. Rapkin diagnosed me with Lichen Sclerosus after 23 years. It is an auto immune disease of the vulva that is progressive. It was a shame that she got me so late because this disease disfigures the vulva. Inflammation makes the skin hard and the hardness makes cracks in your vulva. When the cracks heal you are scarred. Your labia minor and all the skin becomes fused and your clitoris can become buried under skin. Also your vaginal opening is reduced to a small scarred mess. This has happened to me.
I am grateful to Dr Rapkin because it looks as if she has finally helped me with the pain after 23 years. I use Clobetasol regularly to hold down the inflammation and I use topical hormones to thicken the skin. I seems the topical hormones are taking the pain away.
If I could have had these medications 23 years ago my vulva would not now be deformed to an extent that my self esteem has been compromised. All I can say is Thank God I'm 63.
Please, if you have burning and itching ask your doctor if he will test you for Lichen Sclerosus because you can stop the horrible scarring.
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