How is vulvitis treated?

The first treatment is to immediately stop the use of any products that may be causing the irritation and to wear loose-fitting, breathable white cotton undergarments. Over-the-counter anti-itch products should be avoided, as they can make the condition worse, or last longer.

Your doctor may also prescribe the use of an over-the-counter cortisone ointment on the affected area several times a day. This can help reduce the irritation and itching.

Sitz baths and the use of a topical estrogen cream may also be prescribed to deal with the itching and other symptoms of vulvitis.

If these treatments do not reduce the irritation, further tests may be prescribed to rule out more serious underlying conditions such as vulvar cancer. Luckily, vulvar cancer is rare.

Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 03/15/2018.


  • American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. Disorders of the Vulva: Common Causes of Vulvar Pain, Burning, and Itching. Accessed 5/15/2018.
  • Lin, M.-T., Rohwedder, A., Mysliborski, J., Leopold, K., Wilson, V. L. and Carlson, J. A. (2008), ‘HPV vulvitis’ revisited: frequent and persistent detection of novel epidermodysplasia verruciformis-associated HPV genotypes. Journal of Cutaneous Pathology; 35: 259–272.
  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Vaginal and Vulvar Cancers. Accessed 5/15/2018.

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