Vaginismus: A Review of the Literature on the Classification/Diagnosis, Etiology and Treatment

Marie-Andrée Lahaie; Stéphanie C Boyer; Rhonda Amsel; Samir Khalifé; Yitzchak M Binik


Women's Health. 2010;6(5):705-719. 

In This Article

Future Perspective

Unlike the current DSM-IV-TR definition of vaginismus, Binik's new conceptualization of vaginismus as a genito–pelvic pain/penetration disorder takes into consideration existing empirical findings as it incorporates pain, muscle tension and fear. Binik's diagnostic criteria are easily translatable into dimensional terms and do not categorically separate vaginismus from provoked vestibulodynia. This new conceptualization also has significant diagnostic and therapeutic implications in that it suggests that a multidisciplinary approach taking into account muscle tension, genital pain and fear will be necessary to attain a high success rate. It is unlikely that a lone professional will be able to provide such a treatment. A multidisciplinary team, including a gynecologist, physical therapist and psychologist/sex therapist, should be involved in the assessment and treatment of vaginismus to address its different dimensions.