What is the Pimple on My Labia?

I periodically get a pimple-like growth on my labia. It starts out as a round tender growth underneath the skin. Then it comes up to the surface with redness and more tenderness. It hurts. Sometimes I have popped it, and a pus-like liquid came out. Soon after that, it scales and closes up with a scab. It's not an open sore until I pop it. After about a week and a half, it heals and goes away. I have looked up symptoms of sexually transmitted diseases and none match this. I am not even sure that this is an STD because I had it when I was a virgin. I have made appointments to see my gynecologist about it, but the signs are always gone by the time I see her.


Most likely, what you are describing IS a pimple -- a blockage of a sebaceous gland that becomes infected. If it is located more on the inside of the vaginal opening, it may be a Bartholin's gland cyst or abscess; this is again a blockage of a gland opening, leading to buildup of fluid in the gland and subsequent infection.


The best treatment is hot compresses preferably a washcloth which you can heat under running hot water-- do not pop it! Popping something like this is only going to increase the chance of causing an infection or worsening a mild infection. If it gets worse, call your doctor's office and tell the receptionist you have an infection and you must be seen that day or the next. It doesn't do any good to go in once the growth has disappeared. Most offices keep a slot or two open every day for just this sort of thing.


by Kelly Shanahan