Vaginal abscess


An abscess refers to a pus cavity that does not occur in a preformed cavity of the body, but is caused by tissue fusion. In most cases, an abscess is caused by an intrusion of bacteria. In the genital area, abscesses are often perceived as particularly annoying and usually develop in the area of the labia minora. However, they can generally occur in almost all organs of the human body. As a general rule, a severe abscess should always be cleaved by the doctor so that the pus can drain away.

Causes of an abscess in the vagina

The cause of an abscess in the vaginal area is often an inflammation of the Bartholin glands. The ducts of the Bartholin glands end on the inside of the labia minora near the entrance to the vagina. The glands moisten the female genital during sexual arousal.

If one of these glands is blocked, secretion can accumulate and an inflammation occurs, which often involves intestinal bacteria. If the inflammation continues to spread to the surrounding tissue, a painful abscess may develop. Another way an abscess can develop is through a small skin wound.

If the skin is injured, for example when shaving the intimate area, bacteria can penetrate the skin. If these are not completely eliminated by the immune system in time, the immune reaction can cause pus to accumulate in the tissue and an abscess can develop. People with a weakened immune system are particularly prone to the development of abscesses.

This also includes people who suffer from diabetes mellitus, as this disease is accompanied by a slight weakening of the immune system. In addition, the vaginal area is an optimal environment for bacteria, as the area around the genitals is usually warm and slightly moist. This provides an excellent environment for bacteria to multiply.


An abscess is usually quickly noticed by the patient through strong pain. The diagnosis of an abscess is a gaze diagnosis for a doctor. An abscess in the vagina is manifested by swelling, e.g. of the labia minora, redness and overheating of the affected intimate area.

Under certain circumstances, an ultrasound scan of the pus cavity can also be performed. However, this is not necessary in all cases, as the symptoms are usually very clear. The abscess can be distinguished from a boil or carbuncle by the fact that it does not primarily originate from a hair follicle.

Vaginal abscess symptoms

The first thing the patient notices the abscess in the vagina is severe pain. This pain increases under pressure, so that sitting on a bicycle seat, for example, can be particularly painful. Furthermore, the patient can recognise the abscess by the clear inflammatory reaction.

There is a swelling of the affected area. If, for example, an inflammation of the Bartholin glands is the cause, the swelling exists near the entrance to the vagina in the area of the labia minora. In addition, the painful area is reddened and overheated.

Sometimes a small yellow dot can also be seen as a sign of the pustule lying deeper in the skin. In some cases the abscess opens up by itself over time. This is noticeable by the fact that the feeling of pressure caused by the pus cavity improves and in return pus emerges from the area of the vagina where the abscess was previously located. In addition, fever and chills can also occur as the inflammation spreads through the body. In this case a doctor should be consulted as soon as possible.