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Papers: 12 Feb 2022 - 18 Feb 2022

2022 Feb 11

Arch Gynecol Obstet

Vulvodynia: a neuroinflammatory pain syndrome originating in pelvic visceral nerve plexuses due to mechanical factors.



This short opinion aimed to present the evidence to support our hypothesis that vulvodynia is a neuroinflammatory pain syndrome originating in the pelvic visceral nerve plexuses caused by the failure of weakened uterosacral ligaments (USLs) to support the pelvic visceral nerve plexuses, i.e., T11-L2 sympathetic and S2-4 parasympathetic plexuses. These are supported by the USLs, 2 cm from their insertion to the cervix. They innervate the pelvic organs, glands, and muscles. If the USLs are weak or lax, gravitational force or even the muscles may distort and stimulate the unsupported plexuses. Inappropriate afferent signals could then be interpreted as originating from an end-organ site. Activation of sensory visceral nerves causes a neuro-inflammatory response in the affected tissues, leading to neuroproliferation of small peripheral sensory nerve fibers, which may cause hyperalgesia and allodynia in the territory of the damaged innervation. Repair of the primary abnormality of USL laxity, responsible for mechanical stimulation of the pelvic sensory plexus, may lead to resolution of the pain syndrome.