Vulvectomy Definition, Procedure, Recovery Time, Post-op care

Vulvectomy is the surgical procedure in which the partial vulva or complete vulva is removed. Vulva is the external appearing part of female genital system which consists of labia majora, labia minora, vestibule, prepuce, clitoris, fourchette, perineum and anus. Vulvectomy is preferred at the last stage of cancer which cannot be cured with medications and therapy. The cancers may be vulvar dysplasia, vulvar intraepithelial neoplasia or female genital mutation. After Vulvectomy, the sexual functions may still persist but to a limited extent.

The patient may feel discomfort and pain in the groin area for some weeks after the surgery is performed. The simple Vulvectomy have two types i.e. partial Vulvectomy and complete Vulvectomy. In partial Vulvectomy, less than 80 % of the vulvar area is removed. While in complete Vulvectomy, total vulvar area is removed. In this surgery, the upper layer i.e. subcutaneous superficial tissue layer and skin is removed. The radial Vulvectomy involves the removal of skin and deep down subcutaneous tissues. Skinning Vulvectomy involves the removal of the skin of vulvar region. It is also further divided into complete and partial skinning Vulvectomy. The selection of the type of Vulvectomy is totally based on how much the cancer has spread.

Vulvectomy Definition, Procedure, Recovery Time, Post-op care

Vulvectomy Procedure

The Vulvectomy have many types and are performed according to the severity of the cancerous disease. The partial or whole vulva is removed under the effect of anesthesia. The skin which is effected by cancer is cut off and then the wound is allowed to heal. The drains are also placed by the surgical area to collect the unwanted fluids. These fluids are drained off and the physician also teaches the patient about the home care of the vulvar region. The home based nurse may also be appointed to drain the excessive fluid and to take good care of patient.

Vulvectomy Recovery Time

The recovery time of patient after Vulvectomy is totally dependent on the type of vulvectomy performed. The patient have to stick to the bed and the physical activities are limited on bed. The catheter of bladder remains inside for seven days. The patient have to avoid climbing stairs, walking and lifting and pushing. It will take about a month to recover properly and the patient will be able to walk and climb stairs. But the patient have to wait for almost 6 months for any type of sexual activity in order to completely recover from vulvectomy.

Vulvectomy Post-op Care

The patient have to take good care of the vulvar region and for this purpose can take the help of a nurse or any family member. The patient have to use soft and dry towels to clean and dry the wound regularly, sits bath is recommended for the hygiene of vulvar region. A hair dryer or a fan should be used to make the wound dry completely. Thermometer should be used on daily basis to check the infections on vulvar region. Loose clothes and the underwear used should be of suitable stuff.
Vulvectomy Definition, Procedure, Recovery Time, Post-op care Vulvectomy Definition, Procedure, Recovery Time, Post-op care Reviewed by Simon Albert on June 12, 2017 Rating: 5
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