Inflammation of the vulva (the external part of the female genitalia). Infections that can lead to vulvitis include genital herpes and candidiasis (thrush). Infestations with scabies or pubic lice are other probable causes. Vulvitis can also arise as a result of changes in the vulval skin, which appear to affect women after menopause. These changes can take the form of white or red patches and/or thickened skin or thinned areas that can be inflamed. Other possible causes are vulvitis include allergic reactions to hygiene products, urinary incontinence, or excessive vaginal discharges.
Treatment depends on the cause, but can involve the topical application of a combination of drugs; good hygiene is often recommended. If there are skin changes a biopsy (tissue sample) can be taken to exclude the possibility of vulval cancer.