Are lumps on the vagina a worrisome medical condition? What about a small or a large lump on the vagina? Get an insight on causes, symptoms, treatment and how to get rid of lump on vagina using home remedies.
Lump on Vagina Causes
Vaginal or vulva lumps can be a normal health condition or it can be a sign of a condition that require specialized or normal medical attention. Below are 8 possible causes for lumps on your vagina.
- SKIN CONDITIONS
- Vulval Dermatitis– Dermatitis is also known as eczema. It can be caused by anything that irritates the sensitive vagina skin such as underwear, perfumed toilet papers and pads, soaps, vaginal deodorants or spermicides. Dermatitis is the most common cause of lump on vagina because of irritation and inflammation. The symptoms include chronic itching and inflammation.
- Linchen Sclerosus [LS] – when it comes to Linchen sclerosus, though the cause is unknown but it is most common in postmenopausal women. It is also associated with autoimmune disorders such as thyroid, vintiligo and graves’. The Symptoms associated with LS include vulva itching and tenderness, pain during sex and urination. Also the vulva becomes wrinkled and covered in white patches.
- Erosive Vulvovaginitis [EV] – This is a skin condition that lead to ulceration of the vulva and vagina. The symptoms of this condition include vulva pain and inflammation. EV can also be triggered by some of the rare diseases such as cicatricial pemphigoid and lichenoid vaginitis.
- Lichen planus [LP] – This is a type of skin condition that affects a large number of areas on the body ,vagina and vulva included. When it comes to lichen planus the exact cause is unknown but an overactive immune system or genetic predisposition may play a role. Some of the symptoms associated with LP include heavier vaginal discharge, red-purpish color of the skin, painful sex and small lesions.
- Psoriasis of the vulva– psoriasis of the vulva is an immune system disorder whose symptoms include scaly, red plaques, nail pitting and scalp scaling.
- STIs[sexually transmissible infections]
- Vaginal Thrush– thrush is also known as Vaginal thrush is caused by an overgrowth of yeast- fungi called candida. When yeast-fungi inhibits the vagina, mouth and digestive tract in small numbers it upsets the balance of naturally occurring organisms in the vagina an overgrowth of candida occurs and is normally harmless. This can also be caused by pregnancy, diabetes and some medications such as steroids and antibiotics. The symptoms include chronic itching, redness, thick white-creamy vaginal discharge and pain during sex.
Some women using the contraceptive pill, vaginal ring and those on hormone replacement therapy may develop symptoms of thrush.
- Genital warts-genital warts are caused by Human papillomavirus (HPV). They can vary in size, shape and color and usually painless. It is transmitted through skin to skin contacts during vaginal, anal or oral sex. Warts can be found on the clitoris, cervix and inside the vagina.
- Genital herpes-genital herpes are caused by herpes simplex virus (HSV). It is transmitted through vaginal, anal or oral sex. Generally there is no cure for genital herpes but antiviral medications can help reduce the duration and severity of the infection and prevent recurrences. The symptoms of this infection appear between 2-14 days of exposure and they may include flu-like symptoms and painful blisters in the genital area.
- BACTERIAL VAGINOSIS
Bacterial vaginosis (BV) is also known as Gardnerella. It is known to be caused by an imbalance in the bacteria that make the vagina healthy. When this happens, the normal acidity of the vaginal changes and some women will notice an unpleasant strong, fishy smell and a white or grey watery discharge.
Various researches have shown that Bacterial vaginosis mostly affect women who have sex with other women and this creates a strong basis of argument that it might passed from one female partner to another.
- PRE-CANCEROUS CONDITIONS
Precancerous conditions such as Vulva Intraepithelial Neoplasis [VIN] are also know to cause vaginal lump. VIN refers to precancerous cells under the skin of vulva due to vulva undergoing abnormal cell changes. Mostly VIN are associated with HPV, while others are thought to be due to irritation and infection. There are several opinions from different medical experts that smoking may increase persistence of the condition in women.
- CANCEROUS CONDITIONS
Cancerous conditions such vulva cancer are known to cause vaginal lump. Symptoms of vulva cancer include itching, soreness, burning or pain in the vulva, vulva skin looks white, feel rough or has lump, bleeding or discharge not related to menstruation.
- VULVODYNIA (VULVA PAIN)
Vulvodynia is also medically known as pain of the vulva. The international society for the study of vulvovaginal Diseases (ISSVD) describes vulvodynia as ‘’ vulval discomfort, pain, irritation, burning or rawness in the absence of visible or neurological findings’’. The pain experienced by women with vulvodynia varies in intensity from mild to severe and can be consistent or intermittent. The symptoms may include burning, arching, stinging, soreness, irritation and itching.
- VULVA VESTIBULIES
Vulva vestibulies are also the cause of vaginal lump. They are mostly experienced when pressure is applied to the vestibule, for instance when sitting on a bicycle seat, inserting a tampon or attempting sexual intercourse.
Varicosities are swollen varicose veins of the vulva. They happen in 7% of pregnancies or with aging. They appear as raised bumps or round swollen veins around the labia minora. You may not experience pain but sometimes they can feel heavy, cause itching or bleeding.
Small Lump on Vagina Lips
Small lump on vagina lips could be bartholin’s gland cyst. Bartholin’s glands are usually found on either side of entrance to the vagina and are pea-size glands in shape. They develop when the small opening [duct] through which mucus flows from the gland becomes blocked. Normally the glands cannot be felt as they are under the skin. The glands play an important role by secreting mucus, which lubricates the vagina during sexual intercourse.
Some bartholin’s gland cyst are asymptomatic but in other cases the cyst grows to an extend that it begins to cause discomfort. Sex can become uncomfortable as the cyst is irritated during sexual intercourse and there is less lubrication due to the gland duct being blocked.
Bartholin’s gland cyst are relatively common in 2% of women developing one at some stage in their life. They appear to be most prevalent in women of between 20 and 29 years of age.
Large Lump on Vag
A large lump on the vag could be an ingrown-hair abscesses caused by , more sex than usual, rough sex, waxing which makes a hair to get irritated and results to a large incredible lump.
Moreover, a large lump on Vag can be a bartholin’s abscess. An abscess is a collection of pus that can occur with an infection. An abscess can occur in many parts of the body and some times in the bartholin’s gland. Sometimes an abscess develops from a bartholin’s cyst that becomes infected or sometimes the gland itself becomes infected and forms into abscess. Within a few days, the abscess can become larger the size of a hen’s egg and usually very painful.
Lump on Vagina Pictures
Symptoms of Vagina Lump
Vaginal lump are usually asymptomatic. If you happen to have one, you might feel a small bump along the vagina wall or on the lips. In many cases it’s your gynecologist who will discover the lump during your frequent medical examination. The lump can stay the same small size or grow larger.
The vaginal lump shouldn’t be painful but however a larger lump can cause discomfort when you walk, have sex, or insert a tampon.
A vaginal lump is highly likely to cause pain when they get infected. They can be infected by a bacteria found on the skin or by sexually transmitted infections. In most cases, an infected vaginal lump becomes filled with pus and this can be very painful.
How to Get Rid of a Lump on Vagina
Below are various treatments, home remedy options and prevention measures that are conventionally used to get rid of a lump on vagina. Consider the following.
- Vaccines-Taking vaccines such as HPV vaccines.
- Ablation-This involves freezing, burning or use of laser to remove warts occurring in clusters.
- Surgery-Surgery, which will include biopsy, especially if the vulva is manifesting pre-cancerous conditions.
- Medical supplements-Taking oral antibiotic tablets especially if the cause of lumps is bacterial vaginosis.
- Antihistamine tablets- they include over-the counter products.
- Topical Creams or Pessaries
- Applying antibiotic cream or gel for example Aci-Jel Therapeutic vaginal jelly to reduce itchiness and inflammation.
- Gentle moisturizers like aqueous cream to get rid of lumps and stop any splits in the skin
- Weak steroid ointment to treat mild symptoms
- Application of Local anaesthetic ointments such as lignocaine, these ointments have pain relieving properties
- Pain relievers
- Diet-A diet low in oxalate salts is effective in treating vulvodynia.
- Psychological and physical therapy-Physical therapy involves techniques such as therapeutic exercises, ultrasound and electrical stimulation. Psychological therapy entails (CBT) cognitive behavior therapy, hypnotherapy or acupuncture to help manage pain.
- Marsupialization for frequently recurring or troublesome cysts. A doctor places stitches on each side of a drainage incision to create a permanent opening. A rubber tube may be inserted to promote drainage for a few days after the procedure and help prevent recurrence.
More often vaginal lumps can be managed at home as they do not always require medical treatment. Here are 8 home remedies you can try to help relieve your symptoms.
- Sitz Bath
Taking sitz bath for as many times as you can helps in reducing pain and inflammation caused by these lumps. Most often Sitz bath is taken after rectal surgery or if you have anal fistula or if someone has hemorrhoids.
To use sitz bath:
- Fill a bathtub with warm water/ lukewarm water.
- Add 3 tablespoon of Epsom salt into the water and stir thoroughly.
- Soak your genital area for at least 30 minutes.
- Then rinse your genitals with distilled water and pat dry afterwards.
- Take a sitz bath 2 times a day for 2 weeks to get rid of vaginal lumps.
Aspirin has antiseptic properties that help to prevent pain and risks of infection.
To use Aspirin:
- Break a few aspirin tablets into powder form.
- Make a paste by mixing the powder with few drops of water. Alternatively you can mix the aspirin powder with castor oil.
- Apply this paste on the vagina lumps and leave it for 20 minutes before rinsing it off with cold water.
- Repeat this 2 times a day.
- Aloe Vera
Aloe vera is a herbal that has been used for centuries to clear infections. This herb contains ingredients which are antibacterial, antimicrobial, antiseptic and anti-inflammatory. Due to a wide range of medicinal benefits, aloe vera is used to cure dermatological conditions such as acne, eczema and pimples.
To use Aloe Vera:
- Cut and open a fresh aloe Vera leaf and scoop out the gel.
- Keep the gel in a freezer for 10 minutes.
- Apply the gel directly on your vaginal lumps.
- Leave it to sit for 40 minutes and then afterwards rinse it off with lukewarm water.
- Repeat this home remedy 2 times a day for 1 week to get rid of the vaginal Lump.
- Neem oil
Neem is one of the best herbal medicines for lump on vagina. Neem is also known as Indian lilac. It has been used for ages by women to clean the inner walls of vagina after pregnancy to prevent infections. It has antiviral, antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. It also helps to reduce pain and swelling of the vulva caused by vaginal lump.
To use neem oil or Indian Lilac:
- Soak a cotton ball in neem oil
- Dab it on the vaginal lump and around the opening.
- Let it sit for 60 minutes and then rinse it with warm water.
- Repeat this home remedy 2 times a day until the fluid/ pus on the vaginal lump drains out naturally.
- Warm Compress
Warm compress cures skin tissue tenderness and increase blood circulation around the affected area. It also speeds up healing by draining pus from the vaginal lump, reducing pain and inflammation. Regular use of warm compress not only reduces the probability of infections but also it regulates discharge.
To use warm compress:
- Soak a clean cotton ball in warm water and dab it on the vaginal lump.
- Repeat it multiple times to ease the discomfort.
- When fluid start to drain out, rinse with lukewarm water.
- Apply some antibiotic ointment to avoid infections.
- Tea tree oil
According to a study published in 2008 tea tree oil is a natural antiseptic, anti-inflammatory and has antimicrobial properties that can protect you from inflammation and pain caused by a vaginal lump.
To use tea tree oil:
- Mix a few drops of tea tree oil with warm water.
- Use this solution to rinse your vaginal lump and vaginal opening.
- Alternatively, mix a few drops of tea tree oil with a few drops of coconut oil.
- Then, soak a cotton ball in the solution and dab it over the vaginal lump.
- Leave it to settle over the lump for 60 minutes and then rinse with lukewarm water and pat the area dry.
- Repeat this process 2 a day for 6 days to get rid of the vaginal lump.
Turmeric contains an ingredient compound called curcumin that works effectively as anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial and antiseptic agent. It helps to get rid of pain and inflammation. It also helps to regulate vaginal discharge.
To use turmeric:
- Mix 2 tablespoon of Turmeric powder and a little coconut oil to make a paste.
- Apply the paste on the vaginal lump and let it sit for 60 minutes.
- Rinse off the vagina with lukewarm water and pat dry.
- Repeat this remedy 2 times a day until the vaginal lump goes away.
- Be careful when applying turmeric paste it can cause yellowish stains on the fabric and skin.
Garlic is an effective home remedy to get rid of vaginal lumps mainly due to its antibacterial properties that help kill bacterial present around the vaginal lump, this reduces the risk of infection. When taken orally, garlic helps to boost immune system to help fight infections and promote healing.
- Apply mashed garlic on the vaginal lump.
- Allow it to sit for 30 minutes and then rinse it off with lukewarm water.
- Pat the vagina dry.
- Repeat this process 2 times a day for 1 week for effective results.
How to prevent lumps on vagina
- Wear cotton or silk underwear rather than synthetics.
- Use tampons instead of sanitary pads or panty liners.
- Avoid using irritating soaps and detergents.
When to See a Doctor
Quite a number of women find it difficult to talk about intimate details of vagina with others. However, it is important to visit a doctor for a comprehensive consultation. At this stage, your medical history and perfect examination will assist in achieving a more accurate diagnosis, administration of treatment and prognosis.
For successful diagnosis of vulva conditions to be achieved, the following have to be considered at some point:
- Medical history
- Physical examination
- Swab tests to check for infections
During the appointment with your doctor it is important to explain the symptoms of your condition to assist him or her in their diagnosis. Your doctor will be very keen to ask and note information about symptoms, this include:
- Severity and type of pain
- Factors that exacerbate symptoms [for example sex, tampon use]
- Impact of symptoms on sexuality
- Treatment tried to alleviate the symptoms
- If the symptoms began around a particular time [ i.e during pregnancy, after surgery, or after having a new sexual partner]
- When the symptoms occur [ for example do they change according to different phases of the menstrual cycle?]
- Severity and type of pain
For proper and accurate understanding of the problem ailing you, your doctor may also want to know if about other conditions and this include:
- Family medical history of skin or genital cancers
- Urinary or faecal incontinence [these can cause vulva irritation]
- History of thrush or STIs and treatments received
- History of gynaecological surgery
- Recent use of new products like detergents, soap or sanitary products
- Medical conditions like diabetes or immunosuppressive illnesses such as thyroid disease [which can cause susceptibility to infection]
- Allergies including those of previous medications if any
By use of colposcope or a viewing instrument with light that provide a magnified view of the area. Your doctor will perform a close inspection of the area and if appropriate, he will arrange for tests to exclude STIs and fungal infections like thrush. In case of vulvodynia, the doctor will try and determine the areas that are painful.
In case there is any abnormal looking changes a biopsy may be carried out. a biopsy entails removing a small piece of skin from the affected area on the vulva after administration of an anesthesia .
- Genital warts: http://www.nhs.uk/conditions/Genital-warts/pages/introduction.aspx
- Pimples (zits, Spots):Causes, symptoms and Treatments: http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/71702.php
- vaginal Cysts: http://www.webmd.com/women/guide/vaginal-cysts-causes-symptoms-treatments
- What are genital warts? http://www.healthline.com/health/std/genital-warts#overvie1
- Ingrown Hair: http://www.medicinenet.com/ingrown-hair/article.htm