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Some of the most common treatments are summarised below. For a list of some doctors click here, for other practitoners click here.

Sexual Health Clinics in the main centres have vulval clinics staffed by doctors who are experienced in the treatment of vulvodynia. The clinics are free. Contact details are available here.

The doctor may look for what brought about the problem and try to control that. They will try to rule out other causes. Doctors may prescribe medications such as amitriptiline or gabapentin to control on-going pain.

There is a surgical procedure which can treat some types of vestibulodynia, called a vestibulectomy. The reported success rates vary, and most doctors will see it as a last resort. The surgery is not publically funded in New Zealand.

Biofeedback has been successful for many women with vulvodynia. This involves using a machine with a small attachment which is inserted in the vagina to learn to control the pelvic floor muscles. Physiotherapists may also work with dilator to re-adjust to penetration.

Finding an experienced physiotherapist can be difficult. Physios who work with pelvic floor issues, bladder weakness and incontinence are worth approaching as it’s the same muscles. Doctors who run vulval clinics may have recommendations.

Some women may find that counselling is useful. Living with a chronic pain condition is difficult. Vulvodynia is a challenge to relationships. Most women don’t want to broadcast a medical condition like this. It can be useful to have someone to talk to.

Finding the right counsellor for you can be difficult. Doctors who run vulval clinics may have recommendations.

Sex therapy
Vulvodynia can have a massive effect on a couple’s sex life. Some couples may find it useful to see a sex therapist. Finding a sympathetic sex therapist can be difficult, because the problems faced by couples affected by vulvodynia are often different from the problems sex therapists more commonly deal with. Doctors who run vulval clinics may have recommendations of who you could see.

If you can recommend a particular person working in this field, please email