Cancer of the Vulva. Cancer of the vulva, or external vagina, is not the most common cancer in the genital tract, but it is one cancer that can be detected by the patient in its early stages before it has spread to other regions. Most of these cancers develop in areas of leukoplakia which have been itching and irritated for a long time. The onset of cancer may be quite painful in the vulva, presenting a slight bloody discharge and the feeling of a raised lump or ulcer; this can be seen easily with a mirror.
Cancer of the vulva, which often burns when touched by urine, is usually not found until after the age of sixty years, and though the seeking of treatment is commonly delayed in these patients, early surgical care can often promise cure. At no age should treatment of cancer be postponed, because a very simple treatment necessary today, might easily be exchanged for a nightmare of trouble tomorrow.
Bartholin Cyst. Fluid-filled enlargements on one side of the outer vagina, result from the small Bartholin glands which become blocked up. Often caused by infection, these cysts may approach the size of a walnut with little or no pain. However, when filled with pus, such cysts may be excruciatingly painful, and make walking or sitting extremely uncomfortable. These cysts are not cancerous in nature but do have great nuisance value. Their presence is readily detected, known to be abnormal and productive of much cancer fright.
Surgical removal of such cysts is a simple, adequate, and permanent cure for this difficulty.
Fig. 114. Bartholin Cysts are fluid-filled enlarged glands of the vaginal orifice. When infected, they can be exquisitely painful.
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