Purpose: Vulvodynia is characterized by chronic vulvar pain caused by sexual intercourse and often results in female sexual dysfunction. Because the causes of vulvodynia are not clear, many patients do not receive optimal treatment. Recently, gabapentin and botulinum toxin A have both been shown to be effective treatments for vulvodynia. In this study, we retrospectively analyzed the clinical outcomes of botulinum toxin A and gabapentin treatment for chronic pain in women with this condition. Materials and Methods: Seventy-three women with vulvar pain were administered either gabapentin (n=62) or botulinum toxin A (n=11) injections. Effectiveness was measured by use of a visual analogue scale (VAS). We analyzed the treatment method, treatment duration, success of treatment, and side effects or adverse reactions. Results: Pain levels in both groups significantly decreased after treatment. In the gabapentin group, the VAS score decreased from 8.6 before treatment to 3.2 after treatment (p<0.001). The VAS score in the botulinum toxin A group was reduced from 8.1 to 2.5 (p<0.001). Side effects for both therapies were few and subsided with treatment with general antibiotics and nonsteroidal antiinflammatory drugs. Conclusions: Gabapentin and botulinum toxin A are safe and effective treatments for vulvodynia. This condition can cause sexual dysfunction and affect quality of life. However, with proper management, satisfactory outcomes for women with vulvodynia can be achieved.
- Type A botulinum toxins