Vaginismus - Symptoms, Causes & Treatment of Vaginismus


According to the DSM IV, Vaginismus is defined as a persistent and voluntary spasm of the outer one third of the vaginal muscles which prevents any vaginal penetration. It may be lifelong or acquired situational or generalized and may be due to medical or psychological issues or a combination of both. The woman with vaginismus is often very distressed by her condition and seeks medical care so that she may be able to have vaginal penetration.

The emerging thought is that vaginismus is predominantly a sub type of an anxiety disorder with reflex spasm of the vaginal musculature due to severe anxiety or distress. The diagnosis can be made by a variety of health care professionals including gynecologist, psychiatrists, psychologist, pelvic floor therapist or sexual counselor/therapist. Treatment is typically successful with a comprehensive approach that includes education, sexual counseling or therapy and dilator treatment. Some specialists are now using Botox® injections as an adjunctive treatment for vaginismus.



Read more about symptoms affecting the vulva and vagina that may be causing discomfort or pain.

Learn more


Read more about vulvar and vaginal disorders that affect women and their quality of life.

Learn more