In the Unit of Psychodermatology (Hospital del Mar, Barcelona) a study with eighty patients diagnosed of vulvodynia was done. Clinical characteristics, psychopathological profiles and improvement of symptoms after antidepressant therapy were evaluated.
Pain (70%), burning (63.7%), dyspareunia (57.5%) and stinging (56.2%) were the most reported symptoms. 56.5% of patients showed anxiety, 52.2% of them reported a depression disorder. 81.4% of patients scored more than 150 in Life Event Scale, which means a risk above 50% of suffering an illness in the future, and patients’ scores in Dermatology Life Quality Index (DQLI) were higher than the mean of the Spanish validation group. After 6 months of treatment with escitalopram (10-20mg/daily), perfenazine (2-4mg/daily), amytriptiline (10mg/daily), 41% of patients achieved complete remission. 12% patients without drug treatment reported complete resolution.
In conclusion, our results confirm that vulvodynia is associated with psychiatric co-morbidity. The study highlights the psychiatric treatment may be useful. Whether these patients should be evaluated for depression or be referred to a psychiatrist remains to be investigated.
Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona
Department de Dermatologia, Hospital del Mar,
"Clinical characteristics and psychopathological profile of patients with vulvodynia: An observational and descriptive study" Tribó MJ, Andión O, Ros S, Gilaberte M, Gallardo F, Toll A, Ferrán M, Bulbena A, Pujol RM, Baños JE. Dermatology. 2008;216(1):24-30.