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Surgical management of neuroproliferative-associated vestibulodynia: a tutorial on vestibulectomy with vaginal advancement flap

Published:August 10, 2019DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ajog.2019.08.009
      Provoked vestibulodynia is an often underdiagnosed and mismanaged medical condition that impacts the lives of many women. When symptoms are due to a dramatically increased density of pain fibers in the vestibular endoderm, the condition is referred to as neuroproliferative-associated vestibulodynia. Unfortunately, assessment of pain fiber density can only be performed after surgery during histologic examination. First-line therapies for this condition often include topical or oral medications targeting hyperalgesia and allodynia at the vulvar vestibule. However, in the setting of refractory disease, surgical treatment should be considered. The surgical video (Video 1) highlights anatomical landmarks as well as key surgical steps when performing a vulvar vestibulectomy with a vaginal advancement flap for the treatment of neuroproliferative-associated vestibulodynia. Surgeons should have a thorough understanding of pertinent vulvar anatomical landmarks before performing this procedure (Figure 1). The goal of vulvar vestibulectomy, as described in this video, is to excise the entirety of the vestibule containing the pathologic density of afferent pain fibers. This tutorial serves to identify key anatomical landmarks including Hart’s line as well as outline the meticulous dissection required for successful completion of this procedure. We describe our surgical instrumentation as well as provide insight into steps that can be taken to minimize postoperative morbidity.
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