Bumps on the vagina may be due to skin ailments, but are mostly due to sexually transmitted infections (STI). Other symptoms of STIs include pain, itchiness in or around vagina, abnormal vaginal discharge. However, some infected with STIs may remain asymptomatic. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states that STIs are hidden epidemics in the United States, mostly because people are afraid or embarrassed about it. For this reason, people end up not taking any treatment for it. STIs can affect people from all sections of society and have large impact on public health in general. If such infections are not treated properly, they can cause long-term health complications both in women and men.
How to Recognize Bumps on Vagina
Vaginal cysts appear under the skin in sac-like structures. These cysts are filled with air, liquid or some hardened substance. Here are the most common types of vaginal cysts:
Inclusion cysts are small and located in the lower back of vaginal wall. Injury to vagina walls due to surgery or birth process can lead to these bumps on vagina.
Bartholin's cysts are filled with fluid and seen on the either side of the vaginal opening.
Gartner's duct cysts develop on both sides of vaginal walls. These bumps develop when the Gartner's duct accumulates fluid after giving birth.
The bumps on vagina are painless and under skin.
When touched, the bumps feel like pimples.
The bumps do not change in size.
Some may experience discomfort during intercourse.
In most cases, treatment is not needed for vaginal cysts. However, it's still necessary to have routine exams to check any changes of these bumps on vagina. Since they are not harmful, warm bath can be used for the pain. If the bumps cause any severe symptoms, surgery may be needed.
Angiomas are clusters of blood vessels which have overgrown. They are caused by endothelial cells which have multiplied. But they are usually benign.
No bleeding or weeping of the bumps.
The bumps do not change in size.
They are red, blue, purple, or black.
Since angiomas are harmless, treatment may not be needed. However, if you want to remove the bumps for cosmetic purposes, laser treatment, cryotherapy and electrosurgery are options you can choose. You can consult your doctor about which treatment is best for you.
It is a STI caused by the virus – Herpes simplex.
Small, painful, clear or straw colored bumps present on the labia, vagina, cervix, butts and thighs.
Before the bumps appear, the skin in the region feels itchy or tingly with burning sensation.
Some may experience increased vaginal discharge, fever, sore lymph nodes, muscle ache, or painful urination.
There is no treatment for genital herpes and the symptoms can be only managed. Your doctor may suggest antiviral medicine which can reduce the pain effectively and accelerate the process of healing the genital sores. If the herpes recurs, the antivirals should be taken before the manifestation of the sores i.e. when there is tingling, burning and itchiness. A warm bath can help in relieving the pain.
Warts are caused by the HPV or Human Pappiloma Virus and are growths on the skin or a membrane in the vaginal region.
The bumps are fleshed colored and can be flat or raised.
In appearance, the bumps resemble cauliflowers.
They may develop in or around vagina, lips, mouth and throat.
Other symptoms include increase vaginal discharge, bleeding after intercourse and vaginal itching.
Warts need to be treated by a doctor by using prescription medication like Imiquimod, Podophyllin or Trichloroacetic acid. Warts can also be removed through surgical procedure. A follow-up may be needed to check if the warts are completely removed after the treatment.
Molluscum Contagiosum is a common viral infection. Although it is common in children and it is a mild skin disorder, it can be considered as a STI when molluscum contagiosum involves the genitals of adults.
The bumps are 2-5mm in diameter and they are round, raised and firm.
The bumps can be white, pink or flesh colored.
They develop on genitals, inner thighs, butts and lower abdomen.
They usually disappear within a period of 6 – 12 months and do not cause scarring.
The middle of the bump has a small indentation or dot.
The bumps can become red, sore and swollen.
The bump can be easily removed by scratching or rubbing which causes the virus to spread.
Treatment is not required if the bumps disappear after a period of 6-12 months. However, as Molluscum Contagiosum are contagious, your doctor may recommend these bumps on vagina be removed before that. Treatment includes topical application of cream or oral medication. Laser therapy is also used sometimes.
Chancroid is caused by a bacteria called Haemophilus ducreyi. This STI is transmitted through sexual contact or skin contact with an infected person.
Red bumps in different size can be seen on the labia, on the thighs or between the labia and anus.
Painful or burning sensation during urination or bowel movement after the bumps become ulcerated.
Other symptoms include swollen lymph nodes and swelling in the groin.
Chancroid is treated with antibiotics. If the lymph nodes are swollen, they will require to be drained by using a needle or local surgery. This will reduce the pain and swelling, but can cause light scarring at the location.
One of the rarest cause of bumps on vagina is skin cancer. If left untreated, it can be quite deadly.
The bump(s) can be asymmetrical and elevated.
The outline of the bump(s) is uneven.
The bump(s) can enlarge and change the color.
The most common treatment for skin cancer is surgery. The cancerous tissue can be removed by laser surgery or using a scalpel. Skin Cancer can also be treated by radiation or chemotherapy.